May 14, 2009
DO 48, s. 2009
General Guidelines for the Opening of Classes, Including Collection of School Contributions, Enrolment, Student Uniforms and Release of MOOE

To: Undersecretaries
Assistant Secretaries
Bureau Directors
Directors of Services/Centers and Heads of Units
Regional Directors
Schools Division/City Superintendents
Heads, Public Elementary and Secondary Schools
All Others Concerned

  1. Pursuant to the Constitutional mandate for the provision of free public education at the elementary and secondary levels and to meet the country’s targets in the Education For All (EFA) Plan 2015 and the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) with respect to primary school participation there is an urgent need to remove obstacles, both financial and non-financial, to the enrolment and continued schooling of school-aged children.
  2. Accordingly, the following policies shall be strictly observed:
    1. Collection of School Contributions
      1. No fees shall be collected from schoolchildren enrolling in pre¬school up to Grade IV, during the enrolment period and at any time during the schoolyear. This prohibition shall cover, among others, the authorized but voluntary contributions such as BSP, GSP, Red Cross, Anti-TB Fund and PTCA;
      2. For grade and year levels beyond Grade IV, no collection of any type should be undertaken during the enrolment period and the first month of classes. Starting on the second month, contributions for the following may be collected, but only on a voluntary basis:
        • Boy/Girl Scouts Membership
        • Red Cross Membership
        • Anti-TB Fund Drive
        • PTCA
        • School Publication
        • Membership in student organizations
      3. PTCAs may start their collection only after presenting to their members and to the school administration a report on the utilization of the previous schoolyear’s collections. The amount of contributions to the PTCA shall be agreed upon in a general assembly of the PTCA;
      4. The school publication fee shall be set at the school level but shall not be more than Sixty Pesos (PhP60.00) per elementary school pupil and Ninety Pesos (PhP90.00) per secondary school student. The publication of a school newspaper, while not mandatory, is strongly encouraged, particularly at the secondary level in line with the campus journalism program; and
      5. The membership fees for student organization shall be set by the organization subject to existing school policies on student organizations.
    2. Enrolment
      1. Pupils/Students who are promoted to the next grade or year level are considered automatically enrolled for the coming schoolyear in the same school. Only pupils entering first grade, students entering first year high school, and transferees from another public school or a private school need to enroll during the enrolment period. Returning pupils/students shall report to school only for sectioning purposes or any other pre-opening preparations as determined by the school administrators;
      2. Children who will be six years old by the opening of classes (June 1, 2009 for School Year 2009-2010 and every opening of classes for subsequent school years) are eligible for enrolment in Grade I. The birth certificate of the child shall be the documentary basis for admission. In case this is not available, a joint affidavit attesting to the birth of the child executed by two disinterested persons may be submitted, subject to submission of his/her birth certificate thereafter;Children who are younger than six years old by at most six months may be admitted to Grade I provided their readiness for school has been assessed positively by the school where they are applying for admission through the School Readiness Assessment Tool, in relation to DepED Order No. 25, s. 2007 on School Readiness Assessment for All Grade One Entrants;
      3. Pupils/Students who wish to transfer to a public school from another public school or from private school should bring the Form 138 (Report Card) to the school where they intend to transfer. If this document is not available, the child can be admitted on condition that the Report Card shall be submitted not later than the end of the First Grading Period;
      4. Class sizes shall range from a minimum of 15 pupils/students to a maximum of 60 pupils/students per class;
        Whenever possible, classes from Grades I to III, should not exceed 40 pupils per class in order to keep the teaching- learning process more manageable during these foundation years of schooling. In addition, the most competent and/or most experienced teachers should be assigned to these grade levels, particularly in Grade I; and
      5. The specific provision of DepED Order No. 32, s. 2003 giving priority preference for admission to those new entrants who are residents of the locality where the school is located, subject to the reasonable threshold ratio of pupils/students per teacher as stated above is retained.
    3. Student Uniform and ID Cards
      1. The wearing of a school uniform shall not be required in public schools. Students with existing uniforms may continue using these uniforms, if they so desire, in order to avoid incurring additional costs for new attire; and
      2. Identification (ID) Cards shall be provided to students at no cost to them. The school administration shall fund these from their Maintenance and Other Operating Expenses (MOOE).
    4. Release of MOOE in Cash to Schools
      1. Schools Division Superintendents are directed to release MOOE funds to schools without fiscal autonomy in the form of cash advance and in adequate amounts proportional to the enrolment size to ensure that opening funds are available at the start of the schoolyear.
    5. Other Guidelines
      1. The provisions with regard to the “Adoption of Double Shift Policy” to address classroom shortages, as provided for in DepED Order No. 62, s. 2004, subject to the abovecited average and maximum class size shall be maintained; and
      2. The “Revised Guidelines Governing PTAs/PTCAs” insofar as consistent with the guidelines on Collection of School Contributions are hereby reactivated.
    6. Monitoring Implementation
      1. Schools Division Superintendents and School Principals/School Heads are directed to implement this Order. The Regional Office shall monitor the implementation of it; and
      2. Every School Head must send to the Division Office a letter of compliance of this Order. In turn, the Schools Division Superintendents are required to submit to the Office of the Regional Director, who in turn shall submit to the Undersecretary for Regional Operations a consolidated report of said compliance. Any violation of this Order by any school official/employee shall be strictly dealt with administratively, pursuant to DepED Order No. 49, s. 2006, otherwise known as the “Revised Rules of Procedure of the Department”.
  3. All previous issuances which are inconsistent with the provisions of this Order are hereby repealed or modified accordingly.
  4. These guidelines shall remain in force and effect in succeeding schoolyears until revised or repealed.
  5. Immediate dissemination of and compliance with this Order is directed.

DepED Order: Nos. 32, s. 2003; 62, s. 2004; 49, s. 2006;
25, s. 2007; 19 and 40, s. 2008; and 40, s. 2009
Allotment: 1- -(D.O. 50-97)

To be indicated in the Perpetual Index under the following subjects: