THE Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) has returned the unused money intended for the hiring of college faculty and staff who would be displaced by the Kindergarten to Grade 12 (K-to-12) transition, the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) said on Tuesday.
CHED officer-in-charge chairman Prosperpo “Popoy” de Vera said the Labor department returned P700 million to the government.
“The best indicator is that the K-to-12 money given to the Labor department, which is supposed to pay for faculty members and employees who lost their jobs was hardly touched. It was returned to the National Treasury, about P700 million in 2016 and 2017,” De Vera said at the sidelines of this year’s education forum organized by the Philippine Association of Private Schools, Colleges, and Universities (Papscu) at Club Filipino in Greenhills, San Juan City.
De Vera noted there was no massive displacement of college faculty and administrative staff during the implementation of the K-to-12 program in 2016.
“The data shows that the worst case scenario did not happen. The faculty affected [by the K-to-12 transition]either got hired in Senior High School or the new faculty items created by the state universities, and many of them are now doing their Masters’ or PhD. So that was the number one fear in Senior High School, which did not happen,” De Vera said.
In 2014, CHED asked the House committee on education that it will be needing close to P30 billion from 2016 to 2022 to address the possible displacement of faculty and employees.
The Council of Teachers and Staff of Colleges and Universities also warned that more than 85,000 faculty members stand to lose their jobs starting 2016 when the mandatory implementation of two more years of high school started.
The CHED also encouraged college faculty to avail themselves of the international scholarships offered by the government.
“A lot of money have been allotted for international scholarships, but only few have taken. We have to do a better job getting the scholars. We put a lot of money for teachers’ training,” De Vera said.
“We are asking the universities to be more aggressive in sending their faculty members,” he added. “We want to increase the faculty profile of those who have Master’s degree in higher education by an average of about 10 percent every year.”