THE Cebu City Department of Social Welfare and Services (DSWS) yesterday admitted that they lacked manpower to handle all day care centers in the city.
Martha Ricablanca, program coordinator of DSWS Early Childhood Care Development (ECCD), said that the City Government plans to hire more workers that would handle pre-schoolers, who are expected to reach 12,000, next year.
During the Kapihan sa PIA, Ricablanca said that the City has 175 day care center workers and 79 supervised neighborhood playhouse personnel.
Ricablanca said that the contracts of the 254 workers will expire next month.
With the expected increase of pre-schoolers in 2017, Ricablanca said that they plan to increase the number of workers from 254 to 300.
She said that the increase of ECCD workers will help in equalizing the teacher-student ratio.
A day care center worker is supposed to only handle 30 pre-schoolers per session. The worker conducts two sessions a day–one in the morning and one in the afternoon.
But in some barangays like Pasil, Sawang Calero and Guadalupe, the current teacher-student ratio is one is to 60 per session.
Ricablanca said a child development worker receives an P8,000 monthly stipend from the City.
The barangay also provides a financial counterpart, which ranges from P500 to P5,000.
Ricablanca assured that the workers’ salaries are supported with a yearly appropriation, although there are instances that their pay sometimes gets delayed.
Aside from increasing the number of day care center workers, Ricablanca said that the City also plans to put up more daycare centers to address congestion issues.