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Administrative Cases Filed by Private Lending Institutions Against DepEd Personnel

An administrative cases has been filed against DepEd employees for unpaid loans from private lending institutions (PLIs) outside of the Automatic Payroll Deduction System (APDS), according to the Office of Undersecretary for Administration (OUA). In their complaints, PLIs cite DepEd Order No. 49, Series of 2006, or the Department of Education’s Revised Rules of Procedure in Administrative Cases as the legal basis for their claim of willful failure to pay just debts.

According to several reports, private lenders are filing administrative cases to coat/pad collections to favor and use the field offices as their collection agency. It is a shame that, following formal investigations and hearings, some employees received penalties like suspensions or terminations from the company.

In a memo, former DepEd Assistant Secretary for Legal Affairs Atty. Alberto Escobarte summarized the status of all administrative cases against teachers based on dishonesty and willful failure to pay just debts, including those that had already been resolved. According to the report, there are administrative cases of this nature in eight (8) Regional offices and eighteen (18) Division offices.

DepEd must immediately implement a policy to protect the welfare and interests of all public school teachers across the country.

For this reason, former DepEd Undersecretary for Administration Alain Del B. Pascua strongly recommends amending DepEd Order No. 49, Series of 2006, to remove the willful failure to pay just debts as a basis for disciplinary action. PLIs have long used and abused this provision to file complaints against public school teachers before field offices, which should never have been the case. If a PLI has the right to collect, it can do so by bringing a lawsuit in the appropriate court or tribunal, but not in DepEd.

No one should be able to use the DepEd offices as collection agencies. DepEd, however, must never be a PLI accomplice and oppress its teachers.

Amendment to DepEd Order No. 46, Series of 2006 – Revised Rules of Procedure of the Department of Education in Administrative Cases (Draft Copy)

In a letter dated September 8, 2021, addressed to former DepEd Secretary Leonor Magtolis Briones, the Office of the Undersecretary for Administration (OUA) requested immediate action on the proposed amendment to DepEd Order No. 49, s. 2006, specifically the removal of willful failure to pay just debts as a ground for disciplinary action against DepEd personnel.

The Office of the Assistant Secretary for Legal Affairs has submitted a Memorandum which contains a consolidated status report of all resolved and pending administrative cases filed against teachers on the ground of Dishonesty and Willful Failure to Pay Just Debts.

The Memorandum is in compliance with the request of the Office of the Undersecretary for Administration on the basis of several reports received that there are DepEd field offices that are filing administrative cases against teaching and non-teaching personnel for unpaid loans contracted with private lending institutions (PLIs) outside of the Automatic Payroll Deduction System (APDS).

As per the submitted consolidated report, there were eight (8) Regional Offices and eighteen (18) Division Offices that confirmed that indeed there are administrative cases of this nature in their respective jurisdictions.

There is an imperative need to safeguard the welfare and interest of all public school teachers nationwide from these unacceptable practices by considering the provision stated in the subject DepEd Order (Section 2(v) Willful Failure to Pay Just Debts) as an administrative offense. DepEd must not allow its offices to be used as collection agencies and must not be a willing tool to oppress its very own teachers.

Section 2 (v) of DO 46, series of 2006 has been used and abused by PLIs in filing complaints before field offices against public school teachers, which should never be the case. PLIs have all the right to collect but such rights may be enforced through the filing of collection cases in the proper courts and/or tribunal, but not in DepEd.

In line with this objective of protecting and safeguarding the public school teachers, Section 2 (v) of DO 49, series of 2006 is hereby amended to read as follows:

“Section 2. Grounds for Disciplinary Action – An administrative complaint may be filed for any of the following grounds for disciplinary action.

v. Willful failure to pay taxes due the government

Consistent with this policy, it shall be understood that the ground of Dishonesty, when used as a ground for disciplinary action, should not necessarily include willful failure to pay just debts as one of its prohibited acts.

Immediate dissemination of and strict compliance with this Order is directed.

List and Summary of Administrative Cases Filed by Private Lending Institutions Against DepEd Personnel

Attached is the list and summary of administrative cases gathered by former DepEd Assistant Secretary for Legal Affairs Atty. Alberto Escobarte. These reports include only administrative complaints/cases resolved or still pending with the field offices within the last two years.

Table 1: Summary of Administrative Cases Filed by Private Lending Institutions Against DepEd Personnel

ComplaintCount
Dishonesty310
Unethical Conduct20
Violation of Code of Conduct1
Violation of Anti-graft and Corrupt Practices Act1
Harassment, Grave Sadistic Abuse of Authority1
Administrative2
TOTAL335

Table 2: Detailed List of Administrative Cases Filed by Private Lending Institutions Against DepEd Personnel

ComplaintCount
Administrative2
Disgraceful and Immoral Conduct, Dishonesty and Falsification of Official Document1
Dishonesty35
Dishonesty and Falsification of Documents1
Dishonesty and Conduct Prejudicial to the best interest of the service81
Dishonesty and Disgraceful and Immoral Conduct1
Dishonesty and Falsification of Official Documents2
Dishonesty and Gross Neglect of Duty1
Dishonesty and Misconduct13
Dishonesty, Grave Misconduct and Violation of RA 67131
Dishonesty, Harassment, and Falsification of Documents1
For alleged defamation, Violation of Red Tape Act, Negligence of Duty, Misappropriation of Public Funds, Grave Dishonesty, Connivance1
Grave Misconduct, Grave Abuse of Power and Authority, Dishonesty and Conduct Prejudicial to Best Interest of Service1
Grave Misconduct and Dishonesty7
Harassment, Grave Sadistic Abuse of Authority1
Misconduct1
Neglect of Duty, Dishonesty, Conduct Prejudicial to the Best Interest of the Service2
Serious Dishonesty and Falsification of Official Documents1
Unethical Conduct20
Violation of Anti-graft and Corrupt Practices Act1
Violation of Code of Conduct1
Willful Failure to Pay Just Debts139
Willful failure to Pay Just Debts, Dishonesty21
TOTAL335

93% or 310 of the total cases are Dishonesty, specifically:

  • Willful Failure to Pay Just Debts
  • Falsification of Official Documents
  • Neglect of Duty
  • Immoral Conduct

To better understand the distribution of submitted cases please see the charts below:

Figure 1: Number of Cases per Division

Administrative Cases Filed by Private Lending Institutions Against DepEd Personnel

Figure 2: Number of Cases per Region

Administrative Cases Filed by Private Lending Institutions Against DepEd Personnel

Figure 3: Summary of Resolutions

Administrative Cases Filed by Private Lending Institutions Against DepEd Personnel

TeacherPH would like to reiterate the request for action on DepEd Order No. 49, s. 2006 in order to safeguard DepEd offices and personnel against the aforementioned concerns.

READ:

The Education Situation of Vulnerable Groups in the Philippines

The Importance of a School-Based Management System (SBM)

DepEd Basic Information on Plantilla Positions FY 2021

Number of Teachers by Teaching Assignment not in Area of Specialization

The Proportion of Teachers With Teacher III and Master Teacher Positions

Unfilled Positions in DepEd by Regions

Overall Passing Rate in Licensure Examination for Teachers (LET)

Total Number of DepEd Teachers by Position Title and Level of Education

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