Attached is a Division Memorandum No. 218, s. 2015 from Myrna S. Castillo, Ph.D., CESO V, Schools Division Superintendent, DepEd Iloilo dated September 11, 2015, entitled “REITERATION OF STRICT COMPLIANCE WITH RA 8491 (FLAG AND HERALDIC CODE) AND ESTABLISHMENT OF GENERAL GUIDELINES IN CONDUCTING FLAG CEREMONIES IN THE DIVISION OF ILOILO”, which is self-explanatory, for the information and guidance of all concerned.
Republic Act 8491 (The Flag and Heraldic Code of the Philippines), approved on February 12, 1998, was enacted to provide the basic rules and guidelines on the proper way of conducting flag ceremonies and the use of our national symbols. The said law also reiterates the giving of respect to all these symbols most especially the national flag and anthem that embody the national ideals and traditions and which express the principles of sovereignty and national solidarity.
Despite the existence of this law for almost 20 years, many government agencies, private agencies, and most importantly educational institutions and ordinary Filipinos are unaware that they are not complying with what the law requires. Many of these non-compliance happen especially in the conduct of Flag Ceremonies. This could be due to misinformation, wrong instruction, or simple ignorance of the law.
In view of the above, these General Guidelines aim to provide all schools in the Division of Iloilo with the added measures in the conduct of flag ceremonies in order to obviate misconceptions and wrong practices in schools.
These General Guidelines cover all public schools in the Division of Iloilo for uniform compliance with the law and other existing DepEd issuances.
IMPLEMENTING GUIDELINES IN CONDUCTING FLAG CEREMONIES
SCHEDULE OF FLAG CEREMONIES
All schools within this division shall hold a flag-raising ceremony every Monday (before the start of the first class period) or the next working day if Monday is declared a holiday, and a flag-lowering ceremony every Friday (after the last class period) or on the last working day of each week if Friday is declared a holiday.
THE FLAG-RAISING CEREMONY
Every Flag-raising Ceremony shall include the following minimum activities/program:
a. Singing of the Philippine National Anthem as the Philippine Flag is raised.
e. Municipal Hymn (if available)
f. School Hymn (if available)
During the flag-raising ceremony, the assembly shall stand in formation facing the flag. At the moment the first note of the anthem is heard, everyone in the premises shall come to attention; moving vehicles shall stop. All persons present shall place their right palms over their chests, those with hats shall uncover; while those in military, scouting, security guard, and citizens advancement training uniforms shall give the salute prescribed by their regulations, which salute shall be completed upon the last note of the anthem.
The assembly shall sing the Philippine national anthem, accompanied by a band, if available, and at the first note, the flag shall be raised briskly.
THE FLAG-LOWERING CEREMONY
Every Flag-lowering Ceremony shall include the following minimum activities:
a. Singing of the Philippine National Anthem (NOT ANY NATIONALISTIC SONG) as the Philippine Flag is lowered.
During the flag lowering, the flag shall be lowered solemnly and slowly so that the flag shall be down the mast at the sound of the last note of the anthem. Those in the assembly shall observe the same deportment or shall observe the same behavior as for the flag-raising ceremony.
THE NATIONAL ANTHEM
The rendition of the National Anthem, whether played or sung, shall be in accordance with the musical arrangement and composition of Julian Felipe – MARCH TEMPO. As a sign of respect, all persons shall stand at attention and face the Philippine flag, if there is one displayed, and if there is none, they shall face the band or the conductor.
A conductor is needed when there is no accompaniment or recorded music to be played. If there is an available accompaniment or recorded music, a conductor may still be assigned provided that he/she does the conducting properly. Schools are encouraged to assign teachers or students/pupils who know how to properly do the conducting. Conductors shall stand beside or under the flag pole while conducting during flag ceremonies and school programs.
THE PLEDGE TO THE FLAG
The following shall be the Pledge of Allegiance to the Philippine flag:
Ako ay Pilipino
Sa watawat ng Pilipinas
At sabansang kanyang sinasagisag
Na may dangal, katarungan at kalayaan
Na pinakikilos ng sambayanang
Such pledge shall be recited while standing with the right hand with palm open raised shoulder high. Individuals whose faith or religious beliefs prohibit them from making such pledge must nonetheless show full respect when the pledge is being rendered by standing at attention.
THE PHILIPPINE FLAG
The following rules and all other guidelines regarding the use of the Philippine Flag as provided under RA 8491 should be strictly followed:
The flag, if flown from a flagpole, shall have its blue field on top in time of peace and the red field on top in time of war; if in a hanging position, the blue field shall be to the right (left of the observer) in time of peace, and the red field to the right (left of the observer) in time of war.
If on a stage or platform or government office, the flag shall be at the left (facing the stage) or the left of the office upon entering.
When the Philippine flag is flown with another flag, the flags, if both are national flags, must be flown on separate staffs of the same height and shall be of equal size. The Philippine flag shall be hoisted first and lowered last.
If the other flag is not a national flag, it may be flown in the same lineyard as the Philippine flag but below the latter and it cannot be of greater size than the Philippine flag.
When displayed with another flag, the Philippine flag shall be on the right of the other flag. If there is a line of other flags, the Philippine flag shall be in the middle of the line.
When carried in a parade with flags which are not national flags, the Philippine flag shall be in front of the center of the line.
A flag worn out through wear and tear shall not be thrown away. It shall be solemnly burned to avoid misuse or desecration. The flag shall be replaced immediately when it begins to show signs of wear and tear.
The flag shall not be raised when the weather is inclement. If already raised, the flag shall not be lowered.”Inclement Weather” shall mean that a typhoon signal is raised in the locality. The flag should not also be raised when it is raining during the conduct of the flag ceremony. Instead, it shall be hanged on the wall in front of the school’s main building.
During the flag ceremony, the flag shall remain folded before it is hoisted. Flag raisers should only allow the flag to unfurl and fly on its own while it is being raised. At least three (3) flag raisers shall be assigned during the flag raising or flag-lowering ceremony. Two of them shall hold the flag rope and one shall hold the flag.
The flag shall be raised in all schools every April 9 (ArawngKagitingan); May 1(Labor Day); May 28 (National Flag Day) to June 12 (Independence Day); last Monday of August (National Heroes Day); November 30 (Bonifacio Day); and December 30 (Rizal Day); and on such other days as may be declared by the President and/or local chief executives.
Source: DepEd Division of Iloilo