June 20, 2024

Councilor Vladimir Cayabas has passed a resolution calling on the Department of Education-Division of Baguio City to appropriate funds for para-teachers who are rendering voluntary services in various schools in the city.
Cayabas said the DepEd shall “reciprocate” the commendable efforts and contributions of volunteer para-teachers by granting them honorarium.
Para-teachers, also called learning support aides, are those “who qualify in assisting teachers to provide learning opportunities using various learning delivery modalities in promoting achievement and progression of learners.”
As discussed in Republic Act 9293, para-teachers “shall be assigned to areas where there is a shortage or absence of a professional teacher, as identified and provided by the DepEd and the Autonomous Region for Muslim Mindanao education department to the Board for Professional Teachers and to the Commission.” 
The councilor stressed para-teachers provide essential assistance to schools, especially during the Covid-19 pandemic.
He said the DepEd has introduced the idea of hiring para-teachers to assist and provide administrative support to the department and help in facilitating lessons for learners outside the classroom, especially for those whose parents are not capable of monitoring and guiding their children in the new learning setup.
Due to the pandemic, the country implemented alternative learning modalities, such as online learning and modular learning in lieu of face-to-face classes. 
Earlier, the council approved a resolution also authored by Cayabas encouraging the DepEd-Division of Baguio City to consider hiring para-teachers for the implementation of the blended learning system, giving higher preference to teaching personnel who were retrenched or laid off from private schools in the city and to unemployed graduates of education.
The resolution stated hiring para-teachers would ensure adequate workforce to cater to all public school learners in the city.
Cayabas said a number of private learning institutions in the locality had stopped operations due to the expected low turnout of enrollees and the financial strain caused by the pandemic. He said the layoff has contributed to the ballooning unemployment rate. 
“This is a good opportunity to provide employment opportunities to our local talents whose employment from private schools has been disrupted by the Covid-19 and to graduates of Education who are available for service and employment,” Cayabas said. – Jordan G. Habbiling