For School Year 2022-2023, the Youth Formation Division (YFD) of the Department of Education (DepEd) has released the Interim Guidelines for the Youth Commission on Elections and Appointments (Youth COMEA).
All elections and appointments for student organizations, as well as the management of all proceedings and regulations regarding the conduct of any other matter requiring suffrage, are the responsibility of the Youth COMEA.
Table of Contents
Interim Guidelines for the Youth Commission on Elections and Appointments (Youth COMEA) for School Year 2022-2023
As stated in Article II Section XIII of the 1987 Philippine Constitution, the state recognizes the primary role of the youth in nation-building. The Department of Education on the other hand acknowledges the important functions and responsibilities of student organizations in public elementary and secondary schools in the country. Considered one of the most important and dynamic sectors of a country; the contributions, potentials, collective actions, and aspirations of the youth are requisite for the development of the society.
Participation of learners in different organizations is beneficial in order to develop their leadership potentials, skills, and passion to serve. Programs, projects, and activities of student organizations provide training for the students and prepare them for the actualities of life.
In an effort to foster and promote participatory democracy, leadership, and service amongst the learners, the DepEd through the Youth Formation Division (YFD) has issued the Interim Guidelines for the Youth Commission on Elections and Appointments (Youth COMEA) to solely manage and enforce all rules and regulations relative to all student organizations’ related elections & appointments and to help administer all proceedings and regulations relative to the conduct of any other matter that requires suffrage for SY 2022-2023.
This DepEd Memorandum has provisions for the implementation of the Youth Commission on Elections and Appointments (Youth COMEA) nationwide for public elementary and secondary schools in School Year 2022 – 2023. The guidelines herein of school clubs and organizations’ elections and appointments are to be utilized by the following:
- Supreme Pupil Government (SPG) and Supreme Student Government (SSG)
- Youth for Environment in Schools Organization (YES-O)
- Barkada Kontra Droga (BKD)
- Other recognized school clubs and organizations in both public elementary and secondary schools.
Private schools and other institutions offering the K to 12 Basic Education Program are also encouraged to implement these student organization election and appointment guidelines.
The following are the enclosures attached herewith for reference:
Enclosure 1: Election Application Form (EAF) of Student Organizations
Enclosure 2: Certificate of Endorsement
Enclosure 3: Appointment Form
Enclosure 4: Elections Application and Appointment Evaluation Tool
Enclosure 5: Oath of Office of Student Organization
Definition of Terms
For the purposes of this policy, the following terms are defined as follows:
is the learner whose application for candidacy to an elective position is qualified to have his/her name on a ballot and duly approved by the Youth COMEA.
is in charge of specific student organization elections and appointments but not with the Youth COMEA as a whole.
refers to the mode of the election where voting procedures and canvassing of votes are done virtually or through the use of an online platform.
refers to the mode of the election where voting procedures and canvassing of votes are done manually.
is any group of learners recognized by the School Governing Council including but not limited to BKD, YES-O, and other academic clubs.
refers to the student organization’s adviser whose responsibility is to guide and oversee the programs, projects, and activities (PPAs) of the certain student organization.
General Principles and Policies
a.The Youth COMEA shall be the implementing commission on student organization elections and appointments.
b. The Youth COMEA shall be the sole commission to conduct meetings and issue resolutions related to student organization elections and appointments.
c. The Youth COMEA shall be at the forefront of honest and clean student organization elections and appointments.
d. The Youth COMEA shall be an autonomous, non-partisan, and non-sectarian commission in charge of the conduct of student organization elections and appointments.
e. The Youth COMEA shall safeguard the rights of learners to participate in student organization elections.
f. The Youth COMEA shall uphold and adhere to the Mission Statement of the Department of Education “to protect and to promote the right of every Filipino to quality, equitable,’ culture-based and complete basic education” where “students learn in a child-friendly, gender-sensitive, culturally aware, safe, and motivating environment.”
g. The Youth COMEA is founded on the principle of good governance, participatory democracy, transparency, and accountability, in serving student organizations.
h. The Youth COMEA shall exercise jurisdiction over all matters pertaining to student organization elections and appointments.
i. The Youth COMEA shall strive to pursue an independent stand, impartial and not dictated by any other sector, other than the learners, as long as these are not contrary to the student organizations’ Constitution and By-Laws, the Mission-Vision Statement, and Core Values of the Department of Education.
The Youth COMEA has the following objectives:
a. To uphold the values, principles, and ideals of the Department of Education;
b. To set the rules and regulations of the student organization elections and appointments;
c. To oversee the conduct and complaints of the student organization elections and appointments; and
d. To set penalties and manage complaints comprising the conduct of student organization elections and appointments.
Youth COMEA Commissioners
The Youth Commission on Elections and Appointments is composed of five (5) commissioners namely; Chief Commissioner, Commissioner on Screening and Validation, Commissioner on Electoral Board, Commissioner on Appointment, and Commissioner on Grievance.
The Youth COMEA Chief Commissioner is the school head and the other four members of the commission shall come from teaching and non-teaching personnel.
Terms of Office
- Each member of the commission shall hold office for the current school year and is subject to renewal upon the re-appointment of the school head.
- The term of office shall start effectively from the date of oath-taking until the end of the school year.
Selection of the Members of the Commission
The School Head, as the chief commissioner, shall appoint the four (4) other members of the commission.
Duties and Responsibilities of the Commission
In accordance with the existing DepEd policies, the Youth COMEA shall have the following duties and responsibilities:
- Enforce and administer all rules and regulations relative to the conduct of fair, honest, credible, systematic elections and appointments;
- Validate the electoral and appointment procedures and result;
- Approve or disqualify candidacy;
- Prepare and distribute the necessary election forms, appointment forms, and other related materials before, during, and after the elections;
- Keep and secure all pertinent election and appointment documents;
- Resolve all complaints related to the elections and appointments; and
- Proclaim the new set of officers.
Duties and Responsibilities of the Commissioners
- YOUTH COMEA Chief Commissioner shall be the school head and act as the chief executive officer of the commission and shall have the following duties:
- Appoints the four (4) members of the commission;
- Calls and preside all meetings and/or may designate concerned commissioner to preside for meetings related to the conduct of student organization elections and appointments;
- Supervises the student organization elections and appointments; and
- Approves the official results and other documents of the student organization elections and appointments.
- Commissioner on Screening and Validation
- Screens the Election Application Form (EAF) and Appointment Application Form (AAF);
- Secures and submits the final list of official candidates;
- Validates the official results of the student organization elections and appointments;
- Prepares notice of the meeting, minutes of the meeting, and resolutions related to student organization elections and appointments;
- Disseminates information and facilitates meetings and other related events for the election;
- Manages effective recordkeeping before, during, and after the election process;
- Submits the final result to the Chief Commissioner; and
- Posts the final result of the student organization elections in visible places.
- Commissioner on Electoral Board
- Conducts and facilitates the voting process; and
- Performs such functions prescribed by the rules and regulations promulgated by the Youth COMEA.
- Commissioner on Grievance
- Reviews and validates written complaints;
- Convenes with other commissioners and/or concerned personnel in resolving issues and complaints to ensure fair and just decisions; and
- Issues penalties in accordance with the Youth COMEA guidelines.
- Commissioner on Appointment
- Approves or disapproves the submitted requirements of the appointees;
- Exercises the power to appoint wisely, by appointing only the learners who are fit and qualified for the position; and
- Issues and recommends the Appointment Form to the Youth COMEA Chief Commissioner for approval.
There shall be five (5) permanent committees of Youth COMEA namely: Executive Committee, Screening and Validation Committee, Electoral Board Committee, Appointment Committee, and Grievance Committee.
- The Executive Committee shall act as the administrative officer and overseer of the proceedings of the conduct of elections and appointments. This shall be chaired by the Chief Commissioner.
The Youth COMEA Chief Commissioner will decide on the number of members of the committee depending on the needs of the elections and appointments. Each of the commissioners will decide the composition of his/her committee from teaching, non-teaching, and learners.
- The Screening and Validation Committee shall be responsible for screening and validating election application forms and appointment application forms.
The Electoral Board Committee shall be responsible for organizing electoral proceedings on the schedule of election activities such as filing of the Election Application Form (EAF), election campaign, casting and canvassing of votes, and proclamation of winners.
- The Appointment Committee shall be responsible for the approval of appointment application forms endorsed by the Screening and Validation Committee.
- The Grievance Committee shall be responsible to resolve issues, concerns, complaints, and petitions in the conduct of the elections and appointments.
- The campaign period shall cover five (5) school days beginning with the announcement of the official list of candidates and ends immediately before Election Day. If this is not possible, the campaign period may be extended to not more than eight (8) days.
- Campaigns shall only be allowed during the prescribed period set by the Youth COMEA and done in such a manner that classes and other school functions will not be disrupted.
- In the event of virtual campaigns, the Electoral Board Committee may utilize any social media platform agreed upon by the Youth COMEA.
- For face-to-face modality, candidates may engage in a classroom campaign limited to ten (10) minutes.
- All campaign materials must be regulated and approved by the Youth COMEA prior to posting, dissemination, and publication.
- Impersonation in any form shall be considered an election offense and violation.
- No candidate or unauthorized person may remove, destroy or slander any campaign material of a candidate.
Student Organizations’ Election Guidelines
For manual election, voting procedures and canvassing of votes will be done in a face-to-face set-up.
For digital election, the school may use the existing electoral procedure or may adopt from other schools.
Announcement of Elections
The Youth COMEA shall disseminate the schedule and the conduct of elections for School Year 2022-2023.
Filing and Evaluation of Election Application Form (EAF)
The Youth COMEA shall facilitate the filing of the Election Application Form (EAF).
a. Filing of Election Application Form (EAF)
The candidate shall submit the accomplished and completed EAF to the Youth COMEA.
b. Evaluation of Election Application Forms (EAFs)
The Youth COMEA shall evaluate the accomplished EAF of each candidate and shall decide on the approval or disapproval of the candidate’s application.
Announcement of the Final List of Official Candidates and Distribution of Official Ballots
The Youth COMEA shall announce the Official List of Candidates and distribute the official ballots for the conduct of student organization elections for the school year 2022-2023.
Start of Elections
Depending on the mode of election, the voters shall carefully follow the instructions in casting their votes. They should also refer to the student organizations’ election procedures.
Homeroom Class Organizations
There shall be a homeroom class organization composed of executive officers parallel to the organizational structure of the Supreme Pupil Government/Supreme Student Government.
The homeroom class organization shall support the School Organizations in implementing its PPAs.
Student Organizations’ Appointment Guidelines
Selection of Possible Appointees
The Student Organization Adviser shall select possible appointee/s and facilitate the accomplishment of the Appointment Application Form (AAF).
Submission of List of Appointees
The Student Organization Adviser shall submit the accomplished Appointment Application Forms (AAF) and the certificate of endorsement to the Youth COMEA.
Announcement of Newly Appointed Officers
The Youth COMEA shall evaluate and validate the Appointment Application Form (AAF) and come up with an official list of the school’s newly appointed officers in the school year 2022-2023, signed and proclaimed by the Chief Commissioner, and endorsed to the Division’s Youth Formation Coordinator.
Election Tabulation and Validation
- As soon as the casting of the vote is finished, the votes shall be counted in a place designated by the Youth COMEA. For digital/online voting, validation of votes shall not be delayed nor postponed unless directed by the Youth COMEA.
- If two or more competing candidates are tied, a toss coin will be done by the Youth COMEA.
- The Youth COMEA shall validate and proclaim the winner/s accumulating the highest number of votes.
- The Youth COMEA shall present the official results certified by all its members.
Declaration and Oath of Office
The Youth COMEA shall declare the official list of winners duly certified and conduct the oath-taking of the new set of officers.
Conduct of Meetings
- The conduct of meetings must observe the standard of the parliamentary procedures and shall be attended by all Youth COMEA Commissioners.
- The Youth COMEA Chief Commissioner as the Presiding Officer of the meeting shall cast a vote to break the tie in arriving at a certain decision.
Complaints and Disputes
- Any learner or student organization alleging a violation of the Youth COMEA Guidelines may file a complaint that contains:
- Specific section/s of the Youth COMEA Guidelines or the Constitution and By-Laws were violated; and
- A detailed statement of the facts surrounding the alleged violation including the date and time.
- Any election complaint must be filed before the election official results are announced.
- The Youth COMEA shall determine whether the probable cause of the violation has occurred.
- The Youth COMEA shall keep a written record of all meetings, evidence and testimonies heard. Based on findings, the ruling must be made within 72 hours.
Offenses and Penalties
The Youth COMEA issues penalties to any candidates who do not comply with the election guidelines and shall be subject to the following:
a. warning -1st offense
b. reprimand -2nd offense
c. disqualification of a candidate to hold an office or,
d. any penalty deemed appropriate.