get this

Vol. XX No. 51

February 28, 2001

Virac, Catanduanes

Deductions from teachers' pay "unconscionable" - Roco

Department of Education, Culture & Sports (DECS) Secretary Raul S. Roco last week emphasized that his priority is the welfare of ordinary teachers even as he vowed to act on the "unconscionable" deductions from their monthly salaries.

In his meeting with head teachers, principals and supervisors at the seaside residence of Dr. Antonio Zantua last Saturday (Feb. 24), Roco disclosed that he is taking moves to stop the deductions being made by the department's IBM division from the salaries of teachers.

He stressed that he has refused to accept the P17,000 monthly "bonus" offered to him as the DECS secretary's share of the two percent (2%) service fee given to the department by credit companies, adding that undersecretaries, regional directors and district supervisors all get a share from the illegal scheme.

The former senator said even the teachers do not know that they are being dunned 2% in addition to the deductions for loans. Considering that of the P80-billion allocation for salaries over the entire country, with P50-B going to the countryside, Roco said the 2% service fee being given to DECS is excessive and unconscionable.

He cited the case of a Camarines Sur teacher who paid a total of P40,000 in amortizations for an ordinary refrigerator. Roco said that the deductions have resulted in teachers receiving only P2,000 in take-home pay out of their P12,000 monthly salary.

Lamenting that he has not received any feedback from DECS field officials regarding the plight of ordinary teachers, Roco asked them to give him true information, otherwise those caught lying would be suspended.

He also heard a complaint alleging that the IBM division's modus operandi of continuing deductions from teachers' paychecks despite the fact that they already paid fully their loans with the credit companies.

However, the DECS secretary denied a request that the salaries be released every 15th and 30th, saying that IBM processes 18,000 checks every day and would be unduly burdened if such arrangement would be allowed. He also scuttled a suggestion for the direct release to schools of their capital outlays for books and chairs, pointing out that they would most likely purchase the materials in Manila to save on costs, thus defeating the purpose of decentralization.

Roco also promised to act on the report that since typhoon Loleng in 1998, not one of the damaged schools have been reconstructed or repaired. He bared that it is obligatory for the government to build school buildings every fiscal year, vowing to trace the money trail to see if indeed the funds trickled down to division level.

He said he will not accept the perception that the DECS trails only the DPWH and Customs as the most corrupt government agency, adding that he will leave DECS as the best agency in government.

The DECS top honcho also announced that the department needs 3000 qualified principals, promising higher pay to volunteers. He said only by enhancing and empowering principals on campus can the nation improve education.

Click here to enlarge

TAKE YOUR PICK. Aspirants for the province top three posts are shown in separate Tribune photos. Voters may as well start considering their choices for the May 14 polls.




Picture Not Available

ALL EYES ON ROCO. The DECS Secretary is all ears as he listens to complaints of teachers, principals and supervisors from Catanduanes during last Saturday's meeting.







































 The Catanduanes Tribune

 Rawis, Virac


 Philippines - 5001 

 Tel. No.:

     (052) 811-1267 or 811-2640

 Fax No.:

    (052)  811-1267




 Edwin A. Gianan




 Simeon G. Cueno


 Web Administrator:

 Richard T. Revelar

 Calgary, Canada