LEYTE, Philippines – Following the recent suicide of a rookie teacher in Eastern Visayas, the Department of Education (DepEd) Leyte Division recommends equipping newly hired teachers with mental health education.
According to DepEd-Leyte Assistant Division Superintendent Edgar Tenasas, this will prepare new hires of what to expect throughout the course of his or her all-encompassing job as a teacher.
“The region has a plan to consider giving our teachers the so-called mental health education. Somewhat like giving our teachers the knowledge. Or perhaps how are we going to combat if we will be affected because of the work that we have,” said Tenasas.
Aside from mental health education, the Regional office also plans to establish a pre-orientation and transition program prior to deployment of rookie teachers.
Meanwhile, the Alliance of Concerned Teachers (ACT) on Thursday (July 19) urged the DepEd to unload public school teachers of piles of paper works.
ACT Secretary General Raymond Basilio suggested to the government to add non-teaching personnel who would accomplish the paper works for teachers who usually handle up to four classes.
“Sa kalagayan sa Pilipinas, halos wala po tayong Education Support personnel. Si teacher ay nagiging teacher, registrar, gumagampan bilang nurse, guidance counsellor, gumagampan ng samo’t saring trabaho. Dagdag pa diyan iyong napakaraming forms, paperworks na kaniyang ginagawa na maaari namang gawin ng isang clerk ng eskelwelahan,” explained Basilio.
Teacher Emilou Malate of Bagacay West Primary School took her life on July 14 due to depression as she could no longer handle stress and her load as a multi-grade teacher.
Her friends launched a Facebook page seeking justice for Emilou’s death. They also call on DepEd to assign school heads in public schools who have compassion and consideration to his or her colleagues. – Archyl Egano / Marje Pelayo
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