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Monday, July 20, 2009

Getting One's PRC ID

Let me share here some information I got abut getting one's PRC ID. It was started by an email inquiring what help I could give to the Counselor's situation:

dear Fr. Bern,

greetings.. i am back to my mission in (abroad) last (date). Luckily i was able to process my requirements for the exception and was approved. Although i was not able to make it for the Oath Taking Ceremony, is there any means how to get my PRC ID. Neverthless i am actively doing the function of the guidance counselor. Other concern, Fr. will you pls send me the application for the Integrated Professional Counselors Association of the Philippines (IPCAP)...Is there any way i can update myself for the seminars which are necessary for updating and renewal of license. At the moment, i am actively involve in the psycho-pastoral and spiritual counseling with the migrants in (abroad). Thank you so much. God Bless,

My reply:
I called up the PRC Records Management Division of the PRC just a minute ago. To get your PRC ID, you should have the claim stub as well as a special power of attorney (S.P.A) given to someone who can claim it for you. In which case you should have registered at the PRC, kasi you should have signed in the logbook of professional counselors where you placed your ID din po. Hope my task is done. Hope you received too the IPCAP Application for membership. God bless and take care

I asked about the oath taking vis-a-vis the PRC, i.e., the authorized procedure regarding the oath-taking in relation to the ID. The person at PRC who answered my phone call said "that is understood na po."

Wow, that was interesting an answer.

If this is how it is, is there then NO MORE NEED FOR THE OATH TAKING? Has paying for one's license thus taken the place of the oath? Ang pera na ba ang kapalit ng panunumpa? Sorry, but I smell something. I am led to ask more questions like: what's with this oath taking that's making it "understood." Sabagay, in the commercial world, when I pay for something at the store, or bus terminal for a bus seat, or at the new PNRC (Philippine National Railway Corporation) with its new coaches, or in school, it means I am ready for the consequences of my purchase. Has the oath thus become nothing but "formality"? Has it then become so dispensable? If this is so, what is the purpose for its presence in the law?

Or is it possible that those who are tasked to administer the oath may not give it the priority it deserves? I'd like to believe that the bureaucratic system can create shortcuts that may open itself for and even encourage some shady process to take place.

Why not?

Because if I can get my license that way without having to show myself through an oath before the Board of Examiners (in our case, the Professional Regulatory Board of Guidance and Counseling), either personally or in groups, then the license can become a commodity that can be paid, or stated bluntly - BOUGHT!

I think there is a need to look into this matter. We cannot allow the license to be simply a commodity which money can buy. We all know what happens these days in the market: there are lots of pirated CDs, DVDs, cloned brand named jeans and shirts. Right beside PRC is Recto with its manufactured diplomas and even theses and dissertations. If this is so, a FAKE ID is not a distant possibility.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

When Hands Mimic the Rain: Concert Online

My high school batch mates have a yahoo group email account from where I got this very relaxing and rejuvenating music. You may want to go on a concert online, so go ahead and click on these ones and try for yourselves the music that really enlivens one's spirit:


2. Some jazz:

3. Bee Gees Medley

4. This one is really relaxing, imagine them creating the sound of rain falling, using their hands and then simulating the whole rainforest atmosphere, and then they group singing Africa, haah! Makakapasa ka talaga sa board exams after reviewing. Enjoy this one really:

5. Baroque Samba:

Did I hear that these were Counselors? hehe. Wishful thinking ha? God bless

Monday, July 13, 2009

Reviewing for the Board Exams

I got a text message today July 13, inquiring about a review center near the texter's place in the Visayas. Months earlier, I was texted about the same matter. In fact, the inquiry was about review materials. As of now I am not cognizant of any review activities being done by any organization or persons, except that there was this "rhumor" to just read "MY book" because the questions were taken from there. Tumaas nga ang sales ng book na yon na di ko man nabasa when I was having my academics, never ever heard about the author, and never ever read about a certain LUKER or LOOKER? Anyway, if there is any apprehension I can help the reviewers, do feel free to email your questions and the review process may be done that way. Of course free lang. I cannot afford your fees.

And for the benefit of those who are thinking about doing review activities, or publishing review materials, please read the following which I got from the internet:

Source: (Accessed July 6, 2009)
Benchmark Online April 2009

SC: CHED Has No Authority to Regulate Review Centers
By James C. Bitanga

The Supreme Court struck down an Executive Order expanding the coverage of regulation by the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) to include review centers, entities in the business of preparing applicants for professional licensure examinations.

The Court En Banc, through a 23-page ponencia of Justice Antonio T. Carpio, declared EO 566 unconstitutional and invalid as it had expanded the coverage of CHED’s authority without authorizing legislation. Accordingly, the Court also found that the Revised Implementing Rules and Regulations (RIRR) corresponding to EO 566 was “an invalid exercise of CHED’s quasi-legislative power.”

In ruling in favor of the Review Center Association of the Philippines, the Court ruled that EO 566 is an unconstitutional exercise of legislative power by the President as it expands CHED’s regulatory coverage to include review centers, despite the fact that RA 7722, the law defining CHED’s authority, only limits such coverage to “public and private institutions of higher education and degree-granting programs in all post-secondary educational institutions.

In this regard, the Court clarified that a “review center is not an institution of higher learning as contemplated by RA 7722…[i]t does not offer a degree-granting program that would put it under the jurisdiction of the CHED.” Moreover, “[a] review course is only intended to ‘refresh and enhance the knowledge or competencies and skills of reviewees,’” and it does not require enrollment, attendance, a grade or submission of a thesis in order to complete the review center course requirements or take the licensure examination.

Likewise, the Court struck down the RIRR as an invalid exercise of CHED’s quasi-legislative power, finding that “[t]he CHED may only exercise its rule-making power within the confines of its jurisdiction under RA 7722. The RIRR covers review centers and similar entities which are neither institutions of higher education nor institutions offering degree-granting programs.”

The Court also rejected the argument that the President was merely exercising her residual powers under EO 292 in expanding CHED’s regulatory coverage. Following prior jurisprudence, the Court stressed that the President has no inherent or delegated power to make, alter or repeal laws, absent an enabling legislation allowing her to do so. Thus, the President, in amending the functions of the CHED under RA 7722, without enabling laws granting her that authority, usurped the authority of the legislature.

In addition, the Court ruled that RA 8981, the Philippine Regulation Commission Modernization Act of 2000 (The PRC Modernization Act), did not give the President, through the PRC, powers to regulate review centers. Under RA 8981, the PRC must “ensure and safeguard the integrity of all licensure examinations” and adopt “measures to preserve the integrity and inviolability of licensure examinations.” The Court stated that “[t]hese powers of the PRC have nothing to do at all with the regulation of review centers.” (GR No. 180046, Review Center Association of the Philippines v. Ermita, April 2, 2009)

All the best then. God bless

Friday, July 10, 2009

2nd Board Exams: Question #2

Gud pm sir. sori 4 txtng L8. jst wnt 2 ask snce wud wnt 2 tke d goard xam in guidnce. Im from S.C.. Im a grad of guidncecounselng&psych. Dnt hav ma n guidnce but curently im d scul guidnce counselor & im also teaching psychology n colege. Am I qualified jst wnt 2 mke sure il b spendng much & sayang pag di rn pla pwd. hpe u cud help me wid ds matr Fr. Bern [name withheld here].

Good pam sir. Sorry for texting late. Just want to ask since (I) would want to take the Board Exam in Guidance. I'm from (place name withheld here). I'm a graduate of Guidance Counseling & psychology. I don't have Masters in Guidance but currently I'm the school guidance counselor and I'm also teaching Psychology in college. Am I qualified(? I) just want to make sure I'll be spending much and sayang if I am not qualified (pala). Hope you could help me with this matter Fr. Bern.

My response: Good pm. The Board wants to implement the law this time so you will need to have an M.A before you take the board exam.

His text reply: How many units at least to qualify for the test? Or do you have to finish?

My response: Finish a nonthesis M.a in Guidance. Ensure you know the contents of the six Board exam subjects.

His text reply: ur advising me not 2 file nymor in dvao? I have MA thou n a difrnt discipline Teaching english as a second language 33 units? wud dat count? thnk u so much 4 enlightening me at least dnt hav 2 spend so much na wla dn pala..

My response: The Rules and Regulations of R.A. 9258 says in Rule III Sec. 13 that M.A in Guidance is needed

His text reply: Woow.okay thanks.i just read thru d nfo kc nga tgal din magpost or even if u nquire sa prc dey dnt knw. thank u super.

Thus far today's text communication.

This is really interesting, no? It's just a few weeks before the deadline for submission of applications for the second Board examinations in Guidance and Counseling which is supposedly scheduled for Aug. 27-28, 2009 (the same days when IPCAP is going to hold its 2nd National Convention with the theme centering on Guidance Management practices - I shall be writing on this in the next few days), and it seems that people are waiting for some invitation to apply for this 2nd licensure exams. One thing that complicates this matter is shown in a reader's comment which I'd like to put here (it's a comment posted after my June 23, 2009 entry):

Anonymous said...

nakakainis ang batas ng sa board exam na to ang gulo gulo. di ko malaman kung alin ang may problema yung batas ba o yung nag iimplement. First board exam pinakuha nila mga fresh grad. (Candiate for M.A. na ako at that time!) Tapos ngayon mag second board exam ilang beses ako nag pabalik balik sa PRC papalit palit ng requirements. Ilang araw Lang ang pagitan nagpunta classmate ko iba rin sinabi sa kanya. NAKAKAWALANG GANA!!!

My reply to that comment was this:

BRC said...

Hi Ma'am/Sir,
Thanks for your comment. Please be specific about your concern so that we can address the matter. I believe that PRC and the PRBGC may only be able to address those concerns when they are specific (remember the SMART framework in doing behavior change arrangements and management?). By all means feel free to tell us those things that did not have consistency other than this requirement of MA which was not mandated in last year's Board exam. Ano ba yung mga pabago-bagong requirements [nila ngayon]? In this way we can concretely alert the PRC about what the Board should be releasing at this time.

Hope you can use your madness to steer you into passing the exams. I shall include you in my prayers. God bless and take care

For those who are going to take the Board exams on Aug., by all means send in your applications na. The qualifications are stated in the Rules and Regulations of R.A. 9258, and let me quote verbatim the relevant provision here:

Rule III Sec. 13. Qualifications of Applicants. - To qualify for the examination, an applicant at the time of the filing of the application must:

a. Be a citizen x x x
b. Not have been convicted x x x

c. Be a graduate of a baccalaureate in guidance and counseling or in other allied discipline/degree from an accredited college or university with subject units covering those in Sec. 15, Rule III of this RR and a holder of an MA, MAEd, MAT, or MS, in guidance and counseling the curriculum of which covers the core subjects in guidance and counseling on the masteral level, or those in Sec. 15 Rule III of this RR; or a holder of the PhD or Ed.D in guidance and counseling, the curriculum of which covers the core subjects in guidance and counseling on the doctoral level, or those in Sec. 15, Rule III of this RR.

So, the texter above appears to be partly qualified since he is a college graduate in Guidance and Psychology (he should have taken it last year when guys like him were allowed to take the Board, and made it!!! sayang talaga!). While he may have an MA in a different field (teaching English as a 2nd language), it is not the MA that is definitely required by the regulatory law on Guidance and Counseling. So, my response was: take a non-thesis Masters in Guidance and Counseling like many I know who are targeting to take the Board Exams and get the license after passing, after which one can return and write the masters thesis, a matter of arrangement with one's respective department in school where they finished their nonthesis masters in G.C.

And I added that the core subjects for Board Exams must be definitely in that curriculum since currently there appears to be no official curriculum on Masters in Guidance and Counseling from the CHED or the Board of Guidance Counseling. What was constructed was a curriculum for bachelors in Guidance and Counseling, something that is not essential since anyone may take and finish the Masters in Guidance & Counseling despite coming from allied disciplines like Psychology and Education.

Nonetheless, Sec. 15 Rule III of the Rules and Regulations of R.A. 9258 has the following six subjects identified for licensure examinations, and let me quote it here verbatim again:

Sec. 15. Scope of Examination. - The examination shall be in English and shall consist of a written test covering the following subjects:

a. Philosophical, Psychological and Sociological Foundations of Guidance
b. Counseling Theories, Tools and Techniques
c. Psychological Testing
d. Organization, Administration and Supervision of Guidance Services, and Program Development
e. Group Process
f. Career Guidance

Every curriculum for the Masters in Guidance and Counseling needs to have these six subjects (of course we know the Masters curriculum in Guidance and Counseling has other subjects which must be prescribed by the CHED and the Board of Guidance and Counseling [PRBGC]) or else, chances for failure in the licensure exams will be high. Anyway, we just have to be watchful, and act with resolve.

All the best and God bless