Teachers told to be impartial

(Photo by Lyka Casamayor)

TEACHERS were reminded to be politically impartial in the upcoming midterm election, or they would face sanctions.

Department of Education Davao (DepEd 11) spokesperson Jenielito Atillo said DepEd teachers and officials are barred from endorsing any political candidate, especially in their personal social media accounts.

“Even in social media, it’s considered as silent campaigning. It’s against our rules, that any person in government should distance himself/herself in political discussions, especially sa elections,” Atillo said.

He said they will be violating DepEd Order No. 48 that was issued last November 13, 2018.

The order also prohibits the following: forming groups to solicit votes and campaign for or against a political party or candidate; making speeches, commentaries, announcements, or holding interviews for or against a party or candidate; creating, distributing, or displaying campaign materials; “directly or indirectly” gathering contributions for political purposes; wearing campaign materials bearing names of politicians or political parties, expect as authorized by the Commission on Elections (Comelec); being a watcher for a candidate or political party during elections; and using government resources including personnel, property, and time for political purposes.

Atillo also said that the order includes teachers who are supporting teachers’ partylist groups.

DepEd also reminded all schools to refrain from inviting politicians in graduation rites, as this will be used as an opportunity to campaign.

“Please don’t accept (politicians who intend to guest at graduation rites) because you might be facing problems. You might make one happy by accepting it (politician’s intent) but what about his opponents? And there’s no control anymore because if you accept one, others might follow suit,” Atillo said.

Although inviting them is not illegal per se, he said that inviting them would lose DepEd’s “neutral” credibility.


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