Assistant Minority Leader and ACT Teachers Representative France Castro slammed the Department of Education for “submitting” to the wishes of the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) despite the latter’s alleged record of “red-tagging” innocent individuals and of spreading “fake information.”
Castro said it is DepEd’s duty to prioritize the needs of students enrolled in basic education classes and prepare a “safe, effective, accessible” back to school plan instead of kowtowing to the wishes NTF-ELCAC.
She referred to the February 2 memorandum issued by DepEd Undersecretary Alain Pascua. Memorandum 00-221-015 instructed all DepEd regions and divisions to immediately submit the names of nine representatives to the ELCAC per DepEd region and division who will be sent to regional meetings of ELCAC task forces scheduled from January 19 to February 16, 2021.
“The NTF-ELCAC has done nothing but to terrorize, criminalize and demonize legal organizations and innocent individuals who have been vocal in criticizing the lapses and failures of the Duterte administration to its people,” Castro said.
The NTF-ELCAC was reportedly behind the social media posts that falsely linked graduates of the University of the Philippines to the communist movement.
“At this time when the blended distance learning of the Department of Education has failed the youth and its teachers, it should focus all its time and resources in planning and ensuring that the next school year would be more effective for teachers and students,” Castro said.
She stated: “Helping the red-tagging task force should have no place in the Department of Education.”
The opposition lawmaker urged “all our peace-loving teachers” and educators to support personnel who are resisting red-tagging and threats of the NTF-ELCAC.