GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews / 4 March) – The Department of Education (DepEd) in Region 12 reminded principals and administrators of public schools in the region to keep their upcoming graduation rites simple and refrain from collecting hefty fees related to the activity.
Dr. Allan Farnazo, DepEd Region 12 director, said Tuesday principals and school administrators should specifically abide by the provisions of DepEd Order No. 8, series of 2005, which sets the observance of simple graduation rites by all public schools in the country.
Citing its provisions, he said local public schools are not allowed to collect any graduation fees or any kind of contribution for the graduation rites.
“No non-academic projects shall be imposed as requirement for graduation, meaning graduating students are not required to contribute for projects like school stages, gates, concrete canals and chairs,” Farnazo said.
DepEd Order No. 8, which was issued in connection with the national government’s austerity measures, provides that “no extravagant special attire or extraordinary venue for the ceremonies should be required.”
It said contributions for the annual school yearbooks should be made on voluntary basis and not a requirement.
The Parents-Teachers Associations (PTA) or Parents-Teachers-Community Associations (PTCA) may seek voluntary contributions from their members for the graduation ceremonies and celebrations, but Farnazo said school principals, administrators and teachers should not take part in any way in their collection.
“Immediately after the graduation, the PTA and PTCA officials are required to render a financial report regarding their collection. They don’t need to make a big announcement for it but a simple paper detailing the collected amount and their proceeds will do,” he said.
Farnazo said parents and community stakeholders should immediately report any violation to the provisions of such order, especially those involving school or DepEd personnel.
He said their office has opened hotline numbers, 083-2288825 and 0926-9843282, for any report regarding violations to such directive.
“We will consider and investigate even anonymous reports,” he said.
Farnazo said any principal, administrator and teacher who would be caught violating such order would be slapped with corresponding administrative sanctions as earlier set by the DepEd central office.