Watch: Incoming DepEd chief says companies should pay OJT students, not the other way around

Image from the Department of Education website
  • The next education secretary aired her thoughts on OJT students having to pay for their training
  • She said drop-out rates can be curbed if students are paid while they study
  • The earnings they get can also help them get through the extra years of the K-to-12 program

MANILA, Philippines – Earning while working.

Incoming Department of Education (DepEd) Secretary Prof. Leonor Briones said she favors on-the-job (OJT) students receiving wages while they learn to help them with their expenses.

Briones, a Professor Emeritus of Public Administration at the University of the Philippines Diliman’s National College of Public Administration and Governance, said students are often forced to drop-out because they have no more money to fund their education.

“A few years ago, nakita na ang high drop out rate ng mga bata, kasi [we saw a high drop-out rate among children because] by the age of 15-17, youth drop out of school,” she told ABS-CBN. “They go to work in the farms and agriculture firms. In cities, they are on streets, doing anything to earn a living.”

Due to this phenomenon, Briones said she wants schools and companies to stop letting students pay for their OJT training. Instead, they should be given wages as they go through their programs.

Ang practice ngayon, lalo na sa private companies, ang estudyante ang nagbabayad para mag-train, dapat bayaran sila [The practice nowadays, especially among private companies, is that the students pay for the training], but they must be paid so that they are already earning even as they are studying,” she said. “I think it is a sound idea and could help ease the burden of parents.”

Briones, who is also Chair of the Board of Trustees of Silliman University in Dumaguete, Negros Oriental, added that the earnings the students receive would also help them through the additional school years of the K-to-12 program.