ELECTION DUTY. Teachers in Baguio City are briefed on their poll duty for the 2019 mid-term elections in this undated photo. Almost 6,500 public school teachers in the Cordillera Administrative Region will serve as members of the Electoral Board for this year's national and local elections. (PNA file photo by Liza T. Agoot)

BAGUIO CITY – Around 6,462 teachers will serve as members of the Electoral Board in the 77 municipalities and cities of the Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR).

Data provided by Cyrille Gaye Miranda of the Department of Education-CAR Public Affairs Office on Tuesday showed the teachers will be serving in 1,406 voting centers in the region on election day.

The region has 2,153 clustered precincts -- Abra, 395; Apayao, 167; Benguet, 764; Ifugao, 281; Kalinga, 298; and 248 in Mountain Province serving 1,177 barangays.

In Abra, there are 1,185 public school teachers rendering election duty; 501 in Apayao; 2,292 in Benguet; 843 in Ifugao; 894 in Kalinga and 747 in Mountain Province. The figure for Benguet already includes those serving in Baguio City.

“The partial list of identified schools as polling centers are initially doing preparations for the May 2022 elections," Miranda said.

She added that with face-to-face classes ongoing which is somehow affecting preparations in the school and classrooms for the May elections.

“There are election task forces (ETF) in the Schools Division Offices that monitor the preparation of schools as well as ensure that teachers and personnel are provided with adequate information, technical and legal assistance during the performance of their duties as members of the Electoral Board,” Miranda said.

Functions of the ETFs include the maintenance, operation, and monitoring of the center, as well as documenting and reporting all teacher- and school-related issues and concerns before, during, and after the elections.

They will also ensure that teachers are provided with and/or referred to adequate information, and technical and legal assistance in the course of the performance of their duties as members of the Electoral Board and will also serve as DepEd institutional link to volunteer organizations and individuals.

She said that the ETFs will also provide close horizontal and vertical coordination and consultation among the DepEd, the Commission on Elections, and partner agencies involved in the 2O22 national and local elections.

“They will complement the other government agencies' efforts for an honest, orderly, and peaceful conduct of the election,” she said.

Miranda, in a separate message, said they have no data as to whether there are teachers who refused to carry out their poll duty.

During the 2019 midterm elections, about 13 police personnel have been deployed to man the precincts where the teachers opted to cancel their services due to several reasons.

In an earlier press conference, Police Regional Office-Cordillera chief of Staff Col. Elmer Ragay said that they have 20 policemen on standby who have been trained and are ready to be deployed in case they will be needed as members of the Electoral Board. (PNA)