Deped: No PTA Contribution, No Clearance is Illegal

DepEd Secretary Armin Luistro, FSC, Ph.D.
An April 18, 2011 press release by the Department of Education
Education Secretary Armin Luistro called on all schools and officials to promptly release student clearances in order to facilitate enrollment for the incoming school year amid reports on complaints from parents about teachers refusing to give clearances to students for failure to pay certain contributions.
“Given the magnitude of concerns faced by the department towards the realization of real reforms in the education system, it is all the more that wider cooperation and support from the entire bureaucracy, from the central office down to the school level, become essential. It is rather disheartening that based from reports, there are still a number of schools and teachers nationwide that make our ‘take-off’ even harder,” Luistro said.
Luistro, together with Undersecretary for Legal and Legislative Affairs Alberto Muyot, cannot help but express their dismay over a number of complaints against schools and teachers requiring students to pay parents-teachers association (PTA) or parents-teachers-community association (PTCA) contributions, other contributions, and fees, and/or bring cleaning implements before student clearances are released.
“We are in the education sector and we are mandated to provide education and instill values to our students and yet there are some who cannot follow and implement simple orders such as the “no collection policy”. They should realize that such acts defeat the purpose of our EFA commitment because they are discouraging enrolment,” Luistro furthered.
In line with the Education For All (EFA) commitment, DepEd has been taking an aggressive stand to put every school-aged child in school at no cost.
Meanwhile, Muyot reminds all concerned that, “the Department does not allow schools and teachers to deny the release of student clearances for reasons not academic in nature.  Any academic requirements that must be submitted before the release of student clearances must be discussed with parents to ensure that the need to comply is understood.”
DepEd clarifies that the only recognized entity to collect voluntary financial contributions is the PTA. However, non-payment of the contribution by the parent-member shall not be a basis for non-admission or non-issuance of clearances to the child by the school. No teacher or any school personnel shall be involved in such collection activities.
Muyot explained that “requiring the payment of contributions and fees and the giving of materials and supplies to school officials and/or teachers in exchange of students’ records and other official documents are not allowed.
He also warned schools and teachers saying “Any violations will be dealt with accordingly, including the filing of appropriate administrative charges.”
While the department strongly calls on all public schools to abide by the “no collection” policy and ease the financial burden of the parents because of its duty to make sure that school-aged children are in school, DepEd, through the Offices of Secretary and Undersecretary for Legal and Legislative Affairs, assured the public that any official, employee, or teacher found to be in violation of DepEd Orders particularly those pertaining to illegal collections will be given appropriate sanctions.
Strict compliance is expected from all regional directors, division superintendents, school heads, and teachers.