RA 7610: The way to achieve the “best interest of the child”

Summer 2019 year end training focus on the Positive Discipline in Everyday Teaching (PDET). The training was purposefully given as an able intervention of possible violation  that might be committed against children by vertue of RA 7610. DepEd Order no. 40 s. 2012 known as “Policy Guidelines on Protecting Children in School from Abuse, Violence, Exploitation, Discrimination, Bullying and other Forms of Abuses” serve as an Implementing Rules and Regulation of RA 7610 to ensure children’s protection inside the school campuses of the Department of Education. The hottest issue against teachers today implies that many of our teachers, if not all, does not internalize the different intervention training given to them as preventive measures for them not to commit any violation of the child protection laws and policies. Yes, every person is unique and a child is a no exemption to this rule can learned differently even in a single forum as teachers do. However, this is not a reason why we, teachers, do not attend training seriously and get to learn from it not for any examination nor for information purposes only but to continue with our job with an overwhelming  capacity to handle new challenges inside the classroom setting  in response to the changing milieu of the society. Furthermore,  trainings are part and parcel of our professional development carefully planned and charted for our safety and success inside the classroom. Why this? Because today many of our teachers can hardly detach from their “old self ” even realizing that their clients, the new generation, should not be educated the way they were educated before. Let us humbly acknowledge the truth that we cannot educate our young of today like the way we were educated before.

       Todays education should be fully grounded on the core concept of Positive Discipline in Everyday Teaching (PDET).I  consider PDET principle in teaching as a principle of enlightenment borne out from a  genius mind whom I may refer as a social scientist. The final outcome of PDET implementation in school will dramatically reshape this ailing society of today. Its  fruitful implementation rest in all of us educators for this cannot be done by the few instead need a community of  dedicated mentors to facilate its proper implementaion.

       What is sad upon observation is that, teachers themselve is a primary road block. I’m so sorry to say this but upon observation I can easily see from them that such principle is equally ineffective as their practices in everyday teaching. They are not fully convinced that PDET is one of the promising principle that could alter the present image of the society through the implementing arms of our educational system.

        Why do you think they harbor this idea? It is because until today they are not  able to fully grasp the light of this principles and put into real practice according to its very structure inside the classroom setting. Yes there are those who really tried but all of a sudden swerve and in a while found themselves in their old practice again. But why?  May be there exist a cloud of confusion that takes them away from the right direction for effective implementation.

         PDET essentially has the following the key  elements: identifying the long-term goal, providing warmth, providing structure, understanding the childs development and identifying individual differences. All these elements  must be carefully analyze and intertwined in the perceived problematic situation happening in school.

          When solving problem, the very first thing to be done is to understand the problem by correctly pointing it out and translate it in a language simple enough to be clearly undertood without compromising the substantial part of the problem. This part is simply finding the root causes of the problem. Critical analysis should be done in this step to make sure teacher will not be losing the real target. Remember, as teacher, you do not need to rash into coming up with the finding. Careful evaluation must be performed  first before its final declaration.

      The next step is the goal setting towards the resolution of the known problem. This is now the so call long-term goal. It is said because teacher does not need  to have an instant result which normally happen when they employ punishment as a way of discipline. In PDET the result  is not instant instead  a gradual transformation following a particular processes encapsulated in a long term structure so design for a long-term goal. Many of the teachers do not have the virtue of patience and consistency along with the created structure meant for the problem. This is the real limitation of the teacher as to PDET implementation, consistency of oneself with the prepared structure. They end up cold  about the long-term goal before given the opportunity to appreciate the long awaited result. This is sad, real sad about teachers.

       It is true that school is the laboratory of life. It is where character building and  transformation occur toward harnessing the real potential of an individual. Though change is very important in relation to the time frame, with in the number of school years allotted in a curriculum, educators  should remember that forcing change is damaging outside purview  of positive discipline. Finally, the working principle of  the clause ” best interest of the child” can only be achieve if teachers religiously implement the whole package of Positive Discipline in Everyday Teaching from now on.

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