Incoming Department of Education Secretary Leonor Briones would prefer to have a new system where on-the-job (OJT) trainees are paid for their working hours whether in private or public institutions.
Briones told ABS-CBN that it was time for the long-standing proposal to be implemented to allow students to support their families somehow.
“Ang suggestion at that time, kung sa agriculture halimbawa, babayaran sila kasi kasama yan sa programa, 'yung on-the-job training. Kung sa factory, dapat babayaran sila,” she said.
“Imbes na ang practice ngayon, lalo na sa private companies, ang estudyante [pa] ang magbabayad para mag-train,” she added. The nursing industry is known to be among the fields where OJTs actually pay for their training due to the scarcity of available opportunities in the country.
“Dapat bayaran sila para they are already earning even as they are studying… I think that is a sound idea. Baka makatulong yan sa mga parents [na mabawasan ang financial burden nila],” she said.
The Manila Bulletin noted that Briones earlier expressed her support for the K-12 curriculum, but at the same time acknowledged that not everyone can be accommodated by the program.
This prompted her to ask for an additional P45 billion in funding to address the Alternative Learning System. If approved, this will increase the education department’s annual budget to P400 billion.