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Cutting ties

  • VP Sara distances herself from Marcos Cabinet, steps down as DepEd secretary


Vice President Sara Z. Duterte resigned as secretary of the Department of Education and vice chairperson of the NTF-ELCAC, effective July 19, 2024, further cementing the rift between the two prominent political families. 

Former President Rodrigo Duterte and Mayor Sebastian Duterte have criticized the Marcos administration during a series of roadshows around the country and overseas. 

However, the vice president has played coy, preferring to issue general statements rather than directly lambasting her running mate even after she was pilloried and sued for the P11 billion confidential fund. 

Nevertheless, on Independence Day, the first crack in the political alliance between the vice president and President Marcos surfaced when Duterte insisted that UniTeam no longer exists.

The UniTeam was the brand of the Marcos-Duterte tandem that won them the 2022 elections. 

Sara Duterte will continue to serve as the vice president. But her resignation signals her joining the opposition in time for the mid-term elections in 2025.

In a Facebook post, the Presidential Communications Office (PCO) confirmed that Duterte went to Malacañang at 2:21 p.m. today to tender her resignation as a member of the Marcos Cabinet without specifying her reasons.

Ang aking pagbibitaw ay hindi lulan ng kahinaan, kundi dala ng tunay na malasakit para sa ating mga guro at kabataang Pilipino,” Duterte said in DepEd Philippines press conference live broadcast on Wednesday.

The vice president added while her term as DepEd secretary ended, she called on everyone to help give Filipino children the quality education they deserve. 

“Our children are the children of heroes, they deserve no less than an education system that can fully unleash true potential and effectively mold them into vital contributors to nation-building,” she said.

During her stint as the secretary, DepEd launched the Matatag curriculum, a new curriculum from Kindergarten to grade 10, highly anticipated to be implemented nationwide on the July 29 opening of schools.

Duterte reported the department is on track to completing the textbook procurement, and e-learning cards for the first half of the year.

She shared that while the department has to innovate to provide education due to “fiscal restrictions” and “inadequate resources”, it was able to build new classrooms and tap into digital infrastructure to avoid class disruptions amid calamities.

At present, an additional 2000 last-mile schools were provided internet connections through satellites, while 305 schools have been connected to Fiber internet. 

The Learners Rights and Protection Office, a centralized reporting system was launched during her stint to provide a safe and conducive learning environment.

Among the programs launched during her period were a 30-day no-mandatory tasks break for teachers, personal accident insurance, and removal of their administrative tasks.

She lauded partner agencies for committing toward a whole of government approach for basic education, local government units, private sector partners, central, regional, division, and school officials- teachers and non-teaching personnel.

Sa dalawang taon natin pagsasama ang kwentong nabuo natin ay kwento ng kapit bisig na pagtaguyod sa adhikaing maitatag ang isang bansang makabata at batang makabansa,” she said. 

Duterte sought an audience with the President and gave a 30-day notice to ensure a proper and orderly transition for the next DepEd Secretary. 





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