PASIG CITY, May 12, 2019 – To help ensure a credible and orderly 2019 national and local elections, the Department of Education (DepEd) is re-activating its Election Task Force (ETF) operation and monitoring center from May 12 to 14 at the Bulwagan ng Karunungan, DepEd-Central Office in Pasig City.
Regional and schools division offices are likewise authorized to set up their respective ETF operation and monitoring centers on the same schedule as stated in DepEd Memorandum No. 52 series of 2019.
The ETF operation and monitoring centers aim to provide technical and legal assistance, and reports of incidents, issues, and concerns encountered by public school teachers in the performance of their duties as Electoral Board members, as well as the non-teaching personnel who will serve in the polls.
The Department is currently mobilizing 531,307 officials, teachers, and personnel, and a total of 36,830 schools will be used as poll centers.
DepEd election monitoring app
The Department also launched an election monitoring mobile application enabling officials, teachers, and personnel serving in the 2019 elections to send real-time and more accessible reports.
Undersecretary for Administration and ETF chairperson Alain Del Pascua headed the launch and highlighted its purpose during a press conference held on May 10.
“It is our tool to monitor teacher-related and DepEd-related issues and concerns. We want to know the real issues on the ground at a given time so that immediately, may response din kami. Kung may na-harass o nagkaroon ng aksidente or may threats of violence, then, we would immediately inform our law enforcers. In essence, the mobile app is actually in protection of our teachers,” Pascua stated.
He also emphasized in a statement that DepEd is not compelling the use of the said application: “While the submission of reports is required, the use of the DepEd election monitoring app is an option—a simpler, easier, quicker, and more efficient option.”
“DepEd teachers or personnel do not need to purchase smartphone or load for data connection since using the election monitoring app is not mandatory,” Pascua added.
Though using said application is not required, it is a more efficient way of gathering, consolidating, centralizing, and managing information on elections into real-time reports, which can be easily understood and immediately addressed.
The DepEd election monitoring application is designed to be user-friendly. The questions presented in the said application are answerable by simply clicking the” true or false” button. When all the questions are answered, submitting and uploading the reports to the server may take only five minutes. This digital submission of reports takes a shorter time than the past elections’ manual submission.
“This is the first time the Department is launching or taking on this endeavor and engaging the reporting process through a digital, by default, approach. The app, in reality, just simplifies the work to be done and makes it easier, quicker, and more efficient. If data are collected properly, officials are able to easily get a picture of activities and reports within hours, not in months or in weeks,” Pascua explained.
Also present in the launch were ETF Operations and Legal Support Head Atty. Marcelo Bragado Jr., Information and Communication Technology Service (ICTS) Director Abram Abanil, and Intelimina Systems, Inc. Head Deng Silorio.