DepEd readies employees for automated election‏

March 9, 2010 11:16 pm 

MANILA, March 9 — The Department of Education (DepEd), one of the government agencies actively involved in the May 2010 elections, conducted a voter’s education forum for employees to better appreciate election automation.

DepEd has allotted time to conduct this activity to familiarize its employees on how the new system of conducting the electoral process works. It also allowed the participants to experience the actual shading of the training ballots and the use of the precinct count optical scanner (PCOS) machines.

Training ballots were of the same size as the actual ballots that will be used on May 10. However, a different set of names was used.

The event was among the activities prepared by DepEd’s Staff Development Division (SDD) as part of the celebration of Women’s Month.

“DepEd central office staff will not man the polling precinct. However, since they are voters themselves and this is a new system, they also deserve to know how the new process works prior to the actual elections,” said Nerissa Losaria, SDD Head.

For its part, Comelec said the purpose of the automated election system is to increase accuracy in counting and reduce time for canvassing.

“This is the reason why we are pushing for election automation” explained Atty. Adolfo Ibañez, director of the Comelec’s Personnel Department, the forum speaker.

Meanwhile, outgoing education secretary Jesli Lapus said that public school teachers who will man the polls in May 2010 are expected to get a total of P4,300 for their services even as teachers’ training for the automated elections will start on March 2010.

Lapus said: “Our teachers need to be fully compensated as they perform central roles in this political exercise."

DepEd Undersecretary Franklin Sunga said “DepEd has been closely coordinating with COMELEC on the appropriate compensations our teachers deserve for their election duty in May 2010.”

Those who will participate in the 2010 elections are expected to receive the following: members of the Board of Election Inspectors including the chair will get P3,000 each, plus P300 transportation allowance. Another P500 will be given for the inspection, verification, and sealing of book of voters plus another P500 for the inspection, verification, and sealing of the PCOS.

Likewise, team leaders (school heads, principals and education supervisors who are not members of the BEI) who will supervise certain precincts will receive P3,000.

Janitors and messengers who will be assigned in certain precincts during the elections will get P1,500 while members of board of canvassers in the municipal, city and provincial levels will get P5,000.

Sunga added that COMELEC will also set aside P30-million as part of the teacher compensation deal. This amount will be allotted for election-related death or injuries that may be sustained by DepEd employees in the performance of their duties. The heirs of the deceased official/employee shall be given the amount of P200,000.

He added that teachers’ organizations such as the Alliance of Concerned Teachers (ACT), Teachers’ Dignity Coalition (TDC), and the Action and Solidarity for the Empowerment of Teachers (ASSERT) welcomed the positive outcome of their demands from the COMELEC. (PNA)

V3/HCT/mec

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