To help address the concerns of teachers when it comes to their workload, the Department of Education (DepEd) is planning to launch a “balancing tool” that would help determine which tasks are directly related to teaching and other assignments.
In a joint presser of the Office of the Vice President (OVP) and DepEd on Thursday, Sept. 15, Education Spokesperson Michael Poa said that the agency is planning to launch a "workload balancing tool" as soon as possible.
The said tool, Poa explained, aims to determine the number of contact hours teachers should be spending inside the classrooms for their teaching duties. It will also help identify the time teachers should be spending on non-teaching or administrative tasks.
Poa said this as a response to reports of various groups many public school teachers nationwide are complaining of “excessive workloads.” Earlier, a teachers’ group urged DepEd to implement the six-hour workday for all teachers nationwide.
Meanwhile, Poa said that DepEd is also working on reducing “special assignments” given to public school teachers.
For instance, he noted that DepEd is eyeing not to require them to attend some activities that are initiated by the department.
Teachers may no longer be “required” to attend activities organized by local government units (LGUs) to help ensure they have “more time” to spend inside their respective classrooms.
Poa said that the DepEd is eyeing to release the said workload balancing tool “within the year” to help address the issues on the workload of public school teachers nationwide.
Teachers’ groups Alliance of Concerned Teachers (ACT) and Teachers’ Dignity Coalition (TDC) have been urging DepEd to review the workload of teachers in the field.
This is after the reported death of a 57-year-old teacher in Bicol allegedly due to being “overworked.” ACT and TDC have been pushing for the immediate hiring of more teaching and non-teaching personnel so that the current workload of teachers can be eased.
DepEd, on its part, said that it was “very sorry” to hear the news of the death of a teacher allegedly due to too much work.
Poa said DepEd Central Office is also coordinating with field offices to "verify" if the said death of the teacher is related to work.