By Leonel Abasola
MANILA – Lawmakers have renewed the call for public secondary schools to establish job placement centers that will help graduates choose a career path suitable to their skills and preferences.
Senate Bill No. \1689 or the Trabaho (Job) Centers in Schools Act, filed by Senator Raffy Tulfo, will mandate the placement offices to coordinate with the provincial, city, or municipal Public Employment Service Offices (PESO), with supervision from the Department of Education (DepEd).
“The State recognizes the need to prepare the youth in choosing the career tracks that they intend to pursue and to aid in matching senior high school students with career opportunities after graduation,” read Tulfo’s bill.
A similar bill was filed in the House of Representatives last year by Laguna 1st District Rep. Ma. Rene Ann Lourdes Matibag to “enhance the employability of high school graduates.”
Former senator Bam Aquino’s version in 2016 also sought to address unemployment and underemployment by ensuring that suitable jobs await high school and college graduates.
Under the Senate bill, Trabaho Centers shall keep an updated database of job vacancies, job linkages, and networking opportunities; administer testing evaluation instruments; organize career enhancement training and coaching; and help assist students in understanding the results of their National Career Assessment Examination (NCAE).
The NCAE is an aptitude test for self-assessment, career awareness, and career guidance of junior high school students of the K to 12 program.
Tulfo and Matibag’s bills encourage higher education institutions and technical-vocational institutions to similarly establish Trabaho Centers that will prepare their students in choosing career tracks fit for their talents and skills.
The bills task coordinators to encourage partnerships among educational institutions, non-governmental organizations, and local government units in the establishment and management of the Trabaho Centers.
A Career Advocate, who will facilitate the exchange of labor market information, will hold a non-teaching position and focus on activities for youth employability programs in coordination with the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) and other relevant agencies and partner institutions, both public and private.
The Philippine Information Agency, in coordination with DepEd, DOLE, and the Department of Interior and Local Government, will ensure proper and adequate information dissemination of the contents and benefits to pertinent entities in all provinces, cities, municipalities, and villages. (PNA)