CSC to tweak career service exams due to COVID-19

By Ellson Quismorio

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Civil Service Commission (CSC) will adjust the way it conducts its Career Service Examination or CSE.


This was bared by CSC Chairperson Alicia dela Rosa-Bala during a virtual hearing of the House Defeat COVID-19 Committee's (DCC) "New Normal" Cluster Monday.

"There are two modes right now. The more intensive is the pen and paper career service examinations because we usually conduct two times a year. But because of the physical and social distancing requirements as a mode to prevent the spread of COVID-19, we will be revisiting how we can ensure that this will be addressed," Bala told the lawmakers.

She did not give specifics as to how this would be accomplished, but maintained that the conduct of civil service examinations remains a "core mandate" of the Commission.

Bala said CSC would also see to it that the computer-assisted CSE, which is the second mode, "would be fully implemented in our regional offices."

The CSC earlier suspended the scheduled pen and paper CSE on March 15, 2020 because of the growing threat of the new coronavirus back then. The exams, which are yet to be rescheduled, were supposed to be held in 66 testing locations nationwide with an estimated total of 293,845 registrants.

An estimated 253,419 will take the professional level of exam while an estimated 40,426 will attempt to take the subprofessional level.

Bala also informed congressmen about the Commission's suggested Alternative Work Arrangements (AWAs) for government employees for the duration of the COVID-19 crisis.

These AWAs are the work-from-home (WFH) arrangement, skeleton workforce, four-day or compressed workweek, staggered working hours, and the combination arrangement.

The AWA details are stated in Memorandum Circular No. 10, s. 2020, which the CSC promulgated last May 7.

Bala also expressed the agency's backing of House Bill (HB) No. 6623 or the "New Normal for the Workplace and Public Spaces Act of 2020." The measure is expected to be approved during the sub-panel hearing, which is still ongoing as of posting time.

Close to 200 congressmen are pushing for the bill's passage.