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All set for today's licensure exam for teachers

30 September 2018

More than 600 education graduates will take the exam

By Vir B. Lumicao

All is set for the holding of this year’s special licensure examination for Filipino teachers today, Sept 30, at the Delia Memorial School on Hip wo St. in Kwun Tong, East Kowloon.

A total of 614 prospective teachers – 324 elementary and 292 secondary – from among  overseas Filipino workers in Hong Kong, Macau and mainland China, have qualified to sit the annual examination.

This year, nine OFWs based in Macau and one from the mainland will take the exam alongside their Hong Kong-based compatriots, said Gloria Varquez, an officer of the Philippine Overseas Labor Office who is overseeing preparations for the exam.

There are eight examinees who failed to pay the exam fee on time, but have been allowed to settle their obligation on Sept 30, before they are given the exam documents, Varquez said.

Gemma Lauraya, president of National Organization of Professional Teachers Hong Kong, a group that lobbied for holding the special LET here and organized review classes for examinees, said there seem to be no major problems a few days before the exam.

“So far, wala naman po except yong iba na during the exam pa makukuha ang “notice of examination” kasi wala ang names sa list,” she said in an online message.

These examinees appear to have paid the test fee in full but records at Landbank, which was appointed this year as the sole depository for the fees, did not reflect this on its records. The examinees were thus allowed to take the test as long as they are able to show proof of full payment.

Eight domestic helpers whose contracts were terminated by their employers ahead of the exam will sit it in their respective areas in the Philippines such as in Tuguegarao, Cagayan and General Santos City in South Cotabato, Varquez said.

Last Sunday, Sept 23, Labor Attaché Nida Romulo held an orientation meeting with 63 proctors and watchers on exam day who are mostly members of NOPT HK, but also included volunteers from the community.

She said 58 will be assigned to the examination rooms, and the five extra will be on standby as substitutes if some proctors or watchers fail to arrive on time, or they could be designated as marshalls.

“I spoke to them during the orientation and echoed to them the guidelines of the Professional Regulation Commission on the holding of the exam,” Labatt Romulo said.

Varquez said five officers of the CRC were due to arrive on Sept 27 to prepare for the administration of the exam.

On Sunday, the POLO advised the examinees to bring PhP25 or its Hong Kong dollar equivalent for two documentary stamps, in addition to the items that it had earlier reminded them to bring along for the test, which starts at 6am and close at 6pm.

For examinees coming from the outlying islands and the New Territories, POLO has prepared letters requesting their employers to allow them to leave a day early so they can stay near the exam site, and get to the venue by 6am Sunday.

Other examinees have arranged with fellow examinees who live nearby to travel together by taxi so they can get to the venue faster.

This year’s number of takers of the licensure exam is substantially bigger than the 464 who took the test last year.
Lauraya has said this may be due to the SPIMS, or “Sa Pinas Ikaw ang Ma’am, Sir,” a government program meant to encourage Filipino teachers working as domestic helpers abroad to return home and teach.

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