Senate approves TEC reform bill on final reading
The Philippine Senate unanimously approved on its third and final reading Senate Bill No. 2152 or the Teacher Education Excellence Act, a bill that PNU-RCTQ helped draft with the Malacanang-led Technical Working Group for Teacher Quality (TWG-TQ).
Twenty three senators approved the proposed bill that aims to improve the quality of teacher education and training in the country during the Senate Session No. 17 on 20 September 2021. Giving their approval were senators Franklin Drilon, Richard Gordon, Risa Hontiveros, Panfilo Lacson, Emmanuel Pacquiao, Francis Pangilinan, Ralph Recto, Joel Villanueva, Juan Miguel Zubiri, Juan Edgardo Angara, Nancy Binay, Pia Cayetano, Ronald dela Rosa, Christopher Lawrence Go, Manuel Lapid, Imee Marcos., Aquilino Pimentel III, Grace Poe, Ramon Revilla Jr., Francis Tolentino, Cynthia Villar, Sherwin Gatchalian and Senate President Vicente C. Sotto III.
The bill was filed by Sen. Gatchalian, chair of the Senate Committee on Basic Education, Arts and Culture, and was co-authored by senators Villanueva, Revilla Jr., Angara, Binay, Zubiri and Recto. The approval succeeded the second reading of the bill held on 14 September 2021 where amendments resulting from the period of interpellations were incorporated.
Senate Bill No. 2152 will amend Republic Act No. 7784 which created the Teacher Education Council (TEC) in 1994. It seeks to make the TEC a responsive coordinating body for the Commission on Higher Education (CHED), the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC), and the Department of Education (DepEd), and other institutions involved in teacher education. It is also designed to align pre-service with in-service teacher education to improve the quality of teachers, and in turn improve the quality of education provided in elementary and secondary classrooms.
Some of the powers of the new TEC are to “mandate the minimum requirements for teacher education programs and monitor and quality assure compliance therewith”; “uphold and maintain the integrity of the professional standards for teachers and school leaders”; and “establish policies to implement a system of recognition affirming the career stages achieved by basic education teachers and school leaders based on professional standards, and institute and maintain a pool of national assessors for such recognition.”
Senator Gatchalian said that the bill “is a big step forward in addressing the country’s education crisis.”
“We cannot raise the quality of education of our children if our teachers do not have quality education and training,” Senator Sherwin T. Gatchalian said in a statement on Tuesday. “Our teachers are our frontliners in combatting the education crisis we are facing, so let us ensure that, from pre-service to in-service, they are fully equipped to teach.”
RCTQ Director Gina Gonong is a member of the TWG-TQ chaired by Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles. Other members include DepEd, CHED, TESDA, PRC and the Coordinating Council for Private Education Associations (COCOPEA).
In November 2020, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Alexei Nograles delivered an opening message at the Senate hearing on the said reform bill where he shared the President Rodrigo Duterte’s support for the proposed legislation.
“The executive branch is right behind and fully supportive of this bill as directed by the President himself in our 43rd Cabinet meeting,” Nograles said.
In pushing for the said reform, PNU issued a series of position papers to the Senate during the committee and technical working group (TWG) hearings earlier this year.
“A strengthened TEC can meet emerging challenges to quality education, and provide a national leadership for promoting excellence so that teachers and school leaders, as well as Teacher Education Institutions (TEIs), have the maximum impact on student learning in all Philippine schools,” PNU said in one position paper.
PNU added: “TEC can only be successful if it harmonizes its role in the ecosystem of education agencies. In particular, PNU supports the TEC to set out policies, develop and maintain standards and minimum requirements for teacher education, as well as monitor and quality assure processes for teachers, school leaders, and TEIs. PNU likewise recognizes the functions and capacities of other education agencies (e.g., DepEd, CHED) to implement policies and standards in teacher education that will be developed by the TEC.”
The newly approved bill has been submitted to the House of Representatives for consideration.https://www.rctq.ph/?p=3198NewsTeacher Education Council,TWG-TQ