Saturday, August 27, 2016

It ain't heavy, it's really heavy

The old days when teachers are human and not report
generating zombies.

When I started out teaching in the public schools, about six years ago, I was expecting an eight hour job. I imagine myself reporting to work an hour earlier at six in the morning and then checking out at four in the afternoon. Preparing lesson plans and then teaching for six hours add the paper works and record keeping, I knew the job would be tedious but manageable for an asthmatic, rheumatic hypertensive person like me. At least I don't get to dig up trenches or lift heavy objects.

Another plus for public teachers is they have this two months paid summer vacation, which I found out is technically not a vacation because we do report to the school on rotation and on call. But just the same, the lull from the classroom stress provided teachers the chance to recharge.


I noticed things started to change when former President Noynoy Aquino introduced the Result-Based Performance Management System or RPMS as it is known to us teachers aside from the already progressing K-12 program. The paper works started to get heavy and seminar schedules started coming down from the top usually scheduled on weekends. The aim, according to rumors, was to provide teachers with the necessary certificates to meet the required points in the RPMS. 

Good, I thought but then taking away the weekend from teachers is robbing them of their time for their family. Also, weekends are meant for housekeeping since most teachers are too busy on workdays hence their housekeeping chores accumulate and the weekends are their only time to tend to them.  

I rejoiced when the daily lesson plan was replaced by the daily lesson log. The daily lesson log, unlike the daily lesson plan, required teachers to list their lesson objective/s, references, methods and percentage of pupils that achieved the 75% mark, four fields to fill up.

But today a new  fifteen part daily lesson log was introduced to us. I was looking at it and I almost wept because it was being mean to us teachers. It is not only not teacher friendly, it is teacher hostile. Imagine filling out those blank spaces with God knows what phrases and infinitives. What am I going to write? I was tempted to beg our school head to give us back the daily lesson plan because at least teachers are familiar to it and even with eyes closed teachers can write one, but like us the school head is just an employee, a cog in the ever growing DepEd paper mill. 

I pray that this new administration and the new secretary will return the four part DLL.

Teaching is an eight hour job its just that you cannot separate it from the teacher's personal and family life. I guess that makes it a not an eight hour job. Anyway...

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