P11-M released for student-workers in Bicol

LEGAZPI CITY -- The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) regional office here has released PHP11 million for the recipients this year of the Special Program for Employment of Student (SPES).

Lawyer Alvin M. Villamor, DOLE regional director, in an interview on Tuesday, said at least 3,563 students and out-of-school youths (OSY) in the region will benefit from the SPES.

For Camarines Sur, there is a total of 948 beneficiaries; Albay, 910; Camarines Norte, 338; Catanduanes, 328; Masbate, 341 ;and Sorsogon, 698 student-workers, he said.

“Some of the beneficiaries will be deployed to various LGUs (local government units) and private companies and will start this April wherein they will render service for 20 days. While others are still processing their requirements, we are also waiting for the placement reports to be submitted by the provincial field offices for them to begin in their respective jobs,” Villamor said.

For the salaries of the student-workers, he said 60 percent of the applicable minimum wage or hiring rate shall be shouldered by the employer while the remaining 40 percent shall be paid by DOLE.

Villamor said eligible applicants must be at least 15 years old but not more than 30 years of age. The students must have obtained at least an average passing grade during the last semester/ school year attended.

For the OSY, they must be duly certified as such. Also, the combined net income tax of their parents and their own must not exceed the regional poverty threshold.

Villamor also said beneficiaries either working in private/ public establishments, are entitled to an insurance coverage for a period of one year.

Interested students/OSY should apply in person at the nearest Public Employment Service Office (PESO) in his/her area or LGU and undergo preliminary interview and screening. The PESO shall match the applicant's qualifications with the requirements of the participating employer. If qualified to a vacancy, he/she shall be referred for consideration of the employer and in case the student/OSY is not hired, he/she shall be referred to other participating employer/s.

The SPES is an annual employment program for students that helps to immerse them in government and private partner agencies in order to hone their sense of leadership and public service. (PNA)