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PIA Press Release

DepEd preparation in full swing for poll automation

Pasig City (25 March) -- The Department of Education continues to prepare for the successful conduct of the first automated elections by conducting a training/orientation among teachers, administrative and legal officers who will man the polls in the May 2010 national and local elections.

"We want to assure the public that our teachers and administrative personnel are fully prepared to carry out their electoral duties thoroughly, accurately and professionally," said Education Secretary Mona Valisno.

According to Valisno, the orientation aims to educate DepEd administrative and legal officers on COMELEC's general instructions for the members of the board of election inspectors (BEIs).

These officers will in turn cascade their learning and orient public school teachers who will serve as third member of the BEIs.

Valisno also expressed confidence that the teachers will be able to adjust to the new election procedure since many of them are already familiar with a similar optical scanning machine used in correcting answer sheets for the National College Entrance Examination (NCEE) and National Career Assessment Examination (NCAE).

"The entire department commits to this collective undertaking. The stakes are way too high and failure is not an option in this first fully automated election," Valisno stressed.

During the orientation, Atty. Marcos Lauron, election officer of COMELEC Marikina delivered a lecture on the use of Precinct Count Optical Scanner (PCOS) machines.

On the other hand, DepEd Undersecretary Franklin Sunga discussed the general instructions for BEIs and other election matters.

The orientation also touched on Election Task Forces that will be established in DepEd Central Office and in different regional and division offices which will be specially created for the May 2010 elections.

DepEd and COMELEC have earlier signed an agreement that guarantees fair compensation for DepEd employees who will serve in the election.

The Integrated Bar of the Philippines has also agreed to provide free legal assistance to teachers who may face legal suits in the performance of election-related duties. (DepEd) [top]

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