Rizal Rep. Fidel Nograles backs the initiative by the Department of Education (DepEd) to hold mental sessions for agency officials to deal with the stress and anxiety caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Clear heads are needed in facing the challenges of the education sector due to the pandemic — our leaders need to have unclouded minds as they plan how our schools will cope with the changes forced upon us by COVID-19,” Nograles said, after Education Secretary Leonor Briones revealed that the agency had conducted the “Kaginhawaan for Top Leaders of DepEd” sessions aimed at tending to their mental health.
If only teachers and other education personnel on the ground would get similar benefits, the solon said.
“Our teachers also deal with various anxieties over the very uncertain circumstances that we are living under. Hindi lang mental health, kundi overall health ang dapat na siguruhin natin para sa ating mga guro at iba pang education frontliners (Not just mental health, but the overall health of our teachers and education frontliners must be ensured),” the neophyte lawmaker underscored.
Nograles echoed the call of other camps to realign the Education department’s P29-billion budget for rehabilitation of school buildings towards providing health support to teachers, as well as procure necessary equipment.
“As much as possible we should also exhaust all efforts to address the fears of our teachers and other frontliners, and in guaranteeing that they are fully equipped,” the solon said.
He also said that the postponement of school opening from August to October should give more time for DepEd to put in place a safer and more effective system.
“Umaasa tayong gagamitin ng DepEd ang extension na ito para punan ang mga pagkukulang at ayusin ang mga dapat ayusin para sa mga estudyante, at maging sa mga guro (We expect DepEd to use this extension to address deficiencies and matters pertaining to both students and teachers),” Nograles added.