By Noel Punzalan
COTABATO CITY: Teachers in Madaris (Islamic schools) in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) can hold permanent positions in the Ministry of Basic, Higher, and Technical Education (MBHTE) once they pass the ministry’s special eligibility examinations.
MBHTE Minister Mohagher Iqbal said Thursday this is one of the salient provisions of the recently approved Bangsamoro Education Code (BEC) by the 80-member Bangsamoro Transition Authority (BTA), the region‘s interim lawmaking body.
“This is a test of autonomy given to the BARMM on the issue of Mudarris (Islamic teachers) that we can decide on our own,” said MBHTE Minister and Member of Parliament Mohagher Iqbal.
Iqbal said Section 104 of the BEC provides that the MBHTE shall develop and administer special qualifying examinations for permanent appointment to Mudarris positions in the ministry.
In coordination with the Civil Service Commission (CSC) for BARMM, he said the MBHTE will grant special licenses to those who passed the exam, provided that the granted eligibility shall only qualify the appointee to permanent appointment to Mudarris and shall not be considered as a substitute to second level eligibility unless authorized by the national CSC office.
Graduates with Latin honors from a recognized university or institution of higher learning in Arabic and/or Islamic studies, whether local or international, may be exempted from the special qualifying exams and shall be deemed to have met the eligibility requirement for permanent appointment to Mudarris positions, subject to applicable civil service rules on granting honor graduate eligibility.
“Consultation with the CSC revealed the possibility of granting of special eligibility for as long as a law or legal basis is allowing it, thus the provision on the BEC,” Iqbal said.
He said the Mudarris is not one of the professions being regulated by the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) and is not covered by Republic Act No. 1080 or the act declaring the bar and board examinations as civil service examinations.
Iqbal further said that Section 18, Article 9 of the Bangsamoro Organic Law mandates the promulgation of qualification standards for Madaris teachers, and for this purpose, the MBHTE shall propose the qualification standard subject to the approval of the CSC.
Moreover, MBHTE said all Madrasah schoolteachers in the Bangsamoro must have subject mastery and pedagogical competence and must possess good personality and social and interpersonal skills.
MBHTE also requires that teachers must also have the capacity to address the needs of learners with special needs.
Philippine News Agency