Week 2 – 2nd Quarter Daily Lesson Log | August 19 – 23, 2019 DLL

Good day fellow Teachers. We’ve been together for three years now. We had a lot of struggles in our beloved profession but we made it to this new school year together – supporting and sharing our knowledge for the welfare of each other. We were always there for each other as we dream of a smooth and productive school year. Together we withstood the challenges. And now, we have uploaded our Week 2 – 2nd Quarter Daily Lesson Log | August 19 – 23, 2019 DLL

Thanks to all our Contributors, File Editors and Tech Volunteers who managed our website contents as well as our social media accounts selflessly without reservations. Thanks to all of you for your continued support and your collective notions.

And now as we start on another journey with new students and new challenges that are yet to come, we shall stick together as one – a solid DepEd Teachers Club.

No Teacher is left behind.

 

This week’s News that matter:

 

  • DepEd Statement on buffer stock learning materials, errors in textbooks

    • In response to the Commission on Audit’s (COA) observations, the Department of Education (DepEd) reaffirms its strong commitment to implement and adopt the audit recommendations to improve the Department’s systems and strengthen its internal and external controls.The Department has given COA its rejoinder during its exit conference with COA in early August, resulting in a positive and reassuring engagement that enables DepEd to institute new policies and to update, simplify, and codify its internal rules as part of its financial reform initiatives.The DepEd likewise clarifies that the Audit Observation Memorandum (AOM) it received is a written notification, which is still subject to the explanation and justification by the agency, and is different from a Notice of Suspension or a Notice of Disallowance. COA Circular 2009-006 (Prescribing the use of the Rules and Regulations on Settlement of Accounts) defines an AOM as “deficiencies noted in the audit of accounts, operations or transactions and requiring comments thereto and/or submission of documentary and other information requirements within a reasonable period.” Thus, an AOM is preliminary and non-conclusive.Hence, the Department shares its responses to the AOM to duly inform the education stakeholders of the agency’s commitment to pursue reforms in the education sector.Buffer stock of learning materials
      While the Department acknowledges the perennial challenge in the main provision of learning materials (LMs) to certain grade levels and on particular subject areas due to bottlenecks in development, printing, and distribution, it remains committed to its policy to provide every learner per grade level in all public schools with a complete set of textbooks, and every teacher a complete set of teaching manuals that complement the textbooks.To address this, DepEd continues to call for and institute reforms that will prevent bureaucratic procedures from hampering the delivery of materials and services to learners and teachers. In fact, in 2017, DepEd called for a thorough review of Republic Act No. 8047 (Book Publishing Development Act), which prohibits the Department from developing manuscripts for textbooks, and printing or procuring of such when private publishers are unable to meet the demand; and of Republic Act 9184 (Government Procurement Reform Act), which affects the procurement of textbooks that need to be aligned with the K to 12 curriculum.Meanwhile, the buffer stock pertains to 7% of the completed development, printing, and delivery of LMs for the projected enrollment of the school year. This small portion is allotted in times of calamities, as replacement of old or worn-out books, and for newly established schools and increased enrollment, among others. While part of the procured textbooks is delivered directly to school districts, a large chunk is still delivered to the Central Office (CO) warehouses and distributed to regions.

      As for the procurement of textbooks, the Department does so on a centralized basis to avail of economy of scale. Cognizant of such policy’s effect on the timely distribution of textbooks, DepEd’s Bureau of Learning Resources (BLR) is revisiting the policies and guidelines of procurement and distribution. The Department is also looking into the improvement of monitoring and accounting of textbooks vis-à-vis delivery.

      It should also be noted that in 2018, the Department has caught up in its distribution with 76% issuance compared to 15% issuance in 2016. The BLR is expediting the distribution of textbooks and LMs to the regions, and is expecting to complete the distribution of these buffer stocks by the end of 2019. The Department is amending aspects of the policy to make the buffer stock available to all schools division offices (SDOs), with only 0.05% maintained at the CO. The distribution fund has been downloaded to the SDOs, and the forwarding and handling of the remaining 6.95% of the buffer stock are undergoing procurement.

      Correcting errors in textbooks
      In its effort to continuously address the persistent problem of errors in textbooks, DepEd’s BLR has conducted three workshops involving academicians and DepEd validators to validate comments and recommendations from the regions regarding learning resources and textbooks for Kindergarten to Grade 10. Validated findings, description of errors found, and recommendations on how to correct these will comprise the “notes of teachers” that the Department shall issue through a memorandum to the regions.

      Furthermore, the Department also seeks to expand its authority in view of the R.A. 8047, which lodged the mandate to write and print textbooks with private publishers, and confined DepEd’s mandate to “preparing the minimum learning competencies, and/or prototypes and other specifications for books and/or manuscripts called for; testing, evaluating, selecting, and approving the manuscripts or books to be submitted by the publishers for multiple adoption.” Even as the Department recognizes the policy of promoting competition in offering this exercise to the private sector, it also expresses concern that accountability is dispersed among different stakeholders.

      Ways forward
      The Department assures its stakeholders that its direction remains toward the development and implementation of reforms in the education sector. Guided by the 10-Point Agenda of Secretary Leonor Magtolis Briones, DepEd is steadfast in its commitment to address the challenges – persistent or otherwise – toward the delivery of quality basic education for all.

 

 

  • Education chief calls for reforms in scope, policy of COA observations

    • Department of Education (DepEd) Secretary Leonor Magtolis Briones on Wednesday raised concern over the “little regard” given to the agency even as DepEd has already submitted its responses to the Audit Observation Memorandum (AOM) issued by the Department’s resident Commission on Audit (COA) and has started working with COA to address the observations as early as March.“DepEd has great respect for the role of COA in promoting the efficiency and integrity of the operations of government agencies, and in safeguarding public funds against irregular or unconscionable expenditures. We full recognize its power and duty to examine all expenditures or uses of funds and property for this purpose. I myself have served at the Commission in my earlier professional life. . . [but] this [2018 Annual Audit Report] triggered statements from a number of senators expressing frustration over DepEd’s performance; media reported on it, often with use of superlative descriptions, [but] lost in the statements and headlines are DepEd’s comments to the audit observations, partly integrated in the audit report itself,” the Education chief told members of the Senate Committee on Basic Education, Arts, and Culture during an organizational meeting on August 14.An AOM, as described in COA Circular 2009-006 (Prescribing the Use of Rules and Regulations on Settlement of Accounts), is a set of “deficiencies noted in the audit of accounts, operations or transactions requiring comments thereto and/or submission of documentary and other information requirements within a reasonable period.” An AOM may be regarded as preliminary and non-conclusive since it still allows the audited agency to submit comments and documents. Only after an evaluation of the submissions would an audit decision be made to whether allow or suspend a transaction.Meanwhile, the Annual Audit Report is the final output of the regularly yearly audit of the accounts and operations of a government agency by its assigned auditor. The report consolidates the resident auditor’s main observations and recommended actions.Audit observations: Compliance, not corruption
      The Secretary likewise noted that many of the observations pertained to compliance with accounting standards in the keeping of accounts and documentation, and that none of the observations found significant by the resident auditor was about corruption.She further highlighted that the comments and committed actions of DepEd about the observations recorded in the 2018 Annual Audit Report itself. Notable of these are the undistributed buffer stock of learning materials, the reported errors in textbooks, and the expenses for out-of-office trainings, which have caught the attention of legislators, the media, and the public.Limits of audit, considerations in policy
      While the Education chief acknowledged the extent of COA’s power, she pointed out that its observations were taken by media, and even seasoned and well-meaning legislators, “hook, line, and sinker with little regard for the side of the audited agencies.” In DepEd’s case, the audit observations were immediately concluded in some news to be “anomalies.”

      To help address this, the Secretary suggested that the scope of COA’s audit should be properly defined because “the findings can have very serious implications on audit policy” and “can become administratively debilitating for agencies instead of being truly facilitative for fostering government efficiency.”

      An example is the injection of “editorial preferences” in the audit observations, specifically COA’s “corrections” in the choice and capitalization of words and phrases in textbooks.

      “I will not argue with the grammatical errors, but how about style? How about usage? How about the difference between a common noun and a proper noun? An observation in a Grade 3 textbook, ‘pandaigdigang daungan,’ which is a common noun therefore these are in lower case, the audit observation is it should be capital ‘P’ and capital ‘D’ and perhaps I will argue and stake my reputation on the difference between a common noun and a proper noun. So we ask, to what extent should audits be conducted?” Briones remarked.

      A former COA secretary, the Education chief also emphasized the need to revisit the state audit code and adapt it to the realities of modern governance. She expressed confidence that COA Chairperson Michael Aguinaldo will look into these policy considerations with openness to search for reforms.

 

 

  • Briones clarifies reports on undistributed textbooks, bares efforts towards more responsive system

    • Department of Education (DepEd) Secretary Leonor Magtolis Briones clarified that the reported “unutilized” textbooks are buffer stocks in case of calamities and increased enrollment. She likewise shared the initiatives of the Department to a more proactive system of delivering textbooks.The responses to the Commission on Audit’s (COA) 2018 Annual Audit Report were presented in a meeting with the Senate Committee on Basic Education, Arts, and Culture, attended by committee chair Senator Sherwin Gatchalian, and members Senator Pia Cayetano and Senator Nancy Binay on August 14.The said report itself noted that “DepEd has an alarming number of undistributed instructional materials amounting to P113,708,595.00 as buffer stock from CYs 2014 up to 2017.”“Buffer stock refers to the efforts of the Department that whenever there are natural calamities, whenever there are earthquakes, whenever books are destroyed, then we have stocks on hand,” Briones explained.As stipulated in DepEd Order no. 46, s. 2010, or the Policies and Guidelines on the Allocation of Textbooks and Teacher’s Manuals, a buffer stock shall be provided for textbooks (TXs) and teacher’s manuals (TMs) equivalent to 10% of the projected enrollment of the school year when these will be delivered. The buffer stock shall answer for replacements for losses and/or damages of TXs, for increase in enrolment, and for meeting the requirements of newly established/created schools.Briones cited instances when buffer stocks were sent immediately, such as when a school in Dumaguete City was burned and when there was a report about a far-flung school that did not have textbooks.The latest inventory of DepEd’s Bureau of Learning Resources (BLR) showed that there are 137 titles, which are in mother tongue, with buffer stocks in the warehouse. By simple average, the buffer stock for each title is just close to 25,000 pieces per title. The actual inventory of buffer stock for each title ranges from 10 pieces to 179,000. Briones said that if the simple average cost per unit is taken based on the amount of P113.7 million and 3.4 million pieces, this amounts to a unit cost of only P33.34.

      From 2016 to 2018, DepEd delivered 81,892,080 textbooks of various titles nationwide. The 3.4 million buffer stock cited by COA constitutes just 4.2% of the total deliveries.

      As part of DepEd’s continuing efforts to make systems on textbooks more responsive, Briones approved the authority to procure the hauling and delivery of a large portion of these inventory of buffer stocks to the Division offices and to preposition them nearer to places of need as early as end of February this year. This is to also avoid logistical constraints that hampered DepEd to immediately deploy buffer stocks in times of calamities in the past.

      Finally, Briones said that aside from prepositioning buffer stocks locally, DepEd will also allocate a portion of these buffer stocks for the Last Mile Schools Program.

      Textbook bottlenecks
      Briones likewise acknowledged that bottleneck on the provision of textbooks will require legislation to effectively be addressed.

      She shared the legal note on the issue, submitted by Undersecretary Nepomuceno Malaluan and Atty. Ma. Golda Gigi Miñoza, which stated that the combination of laws, particularly of Republic Act 8047 (Book Publishing Industry Development Act) and Republic Act 9184 (Government Procurement Reform Act), implementing issuances, and agency practice resulted to lengthened processes that caused major delays in the manuscript development, printing, and delivery of textbooks.

      In response to these stringency, DepEd considers pushing for legislation to: “re-establish an Instructional Materials Council, to provide high-level, policy guidance to the concerned bureau on textbook standards; recover for DepEd the authority, concurrent with the private sector, to develop manuscripts of textbooks and other learning resources; specify various procurement approaches or modalities for textbooks and learning resources, including through procurement of consulting services, the current procedure under Resolution No. 01-2010, or Volume 5: Manual of Procedures for the Procurement of Manuscripts for Textbooks and Teacher’s Manuals, or the procurement of books as goods; and include an additional modality hereby DepEd is authorized to pre-select titles based on transparent standards and procedures, and procure these competitively or through alternative modes, as applicable.”

      These proposals, Briones said, will be discussed at the DepEd executive committee (ExeCom) level, with inputs of other ExeCom members and their strand directors duly considered.

      In a communication sent by Albay Rep. Joey Salceda, requesting to be furnished with the responses and clarifications of the Department on the audit observation, he offered his support should legislation be part of the reform. DepEd also agreed to develop with him a bill that would address the textbooks bottleneck.

 

 

Week 2 – 2nd Quarter Daily Lesson Log
August 19 – 23, 2019 DLL

 

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