The Elizabeth Seton School management with the assistance of its legal counsel is guided by the following Administrative Rules and Regulations in promoting discipline and proper conduct within its community of workers in accordance with the Labor Code of the Philippines, “The employer has the prerogative to instill discipline in his employees and to impose reasonable penalties, including dismissal, on erring employees pursuant to company rules and regulations” (SMC vs NLRC, G.R. No. 87277, May 1989).
Provisions stated in this document are based on the mandated policies of Philippine Department of Labor and Employment and the Department of Education ensuring just and fair proceedings for all concerned.
Employee Discipline Tribunal
Employee conflicts and violation of school rules and regulations are undesired yet unavoidable circumstances in any organization. The management therefore of these events is handled by the HRD Unit who is responsible for the processing of cases with particular interest for the truth and the issuance of commensurate penalties based on the Administrative Rules and Regulations to those involved to ensure proper and just discipline of all concerned.
“The employer has the prerogative to instill discipline in his employees and to impose reasonable penalties, including dismissal, on erring employees pursuant to company rules and regulations” (SMC vs NLRC, G.R. No. 87277, May 1989)
In pursuance of creating a responsible and just community, the
The court has already set fourth what is now known as the “cardinal primary” requirements of due process in administrative proceedings in reference to employee discipline, to wit: (Azucena, 2001)
1. The right to a hearing which includes the right to present one’s case and submit evidence in support thereof;
2. The formation of a tribunal that must consider the evidence presented;
3. The decision must have something to support itself;
4. The evidence must be substantial, and substantial evidence means such evidences as a reasonable mind might accept as adequate to support a conclusion;
5. The decision must be based on the evidence presented at the hearing, or at least contained in the record and disclosed to the parties affected;
6. The tribunal or body of any of its judges must act on its or simply accept the views of a subordinate;
7. The board or body should, in all controversial questions, render its decision in such a manner that the parties to the proceedings can know the various issues involved, and the reason for the decision rendered.
In response to such requirements, the Elizabeth Seton School Human Resource Development Unit has formulated the Employee Discipline Tribunal (EDT); a body which handles serious employee discipline cases including but not limited to concerns related to sexual harassment. The ESS EDT is composed of three (3) randomly selected members of the school community who are not directly involved with the proceedings of the case and a representative of the HRD Unit.
The ESS EDT is composed of three (3) randomly selected members of the school community who are not directly involved with the proceedings of the case and a representative of the HRD Unit.
Selection of Tribunal Members
· A copy of the most recent school rooster is used as reference for the selection of EDT members
· Names of employees with known biases, related to the case and those the “accused employee” prefers to inhibit from the case hearing are removed from the list
· The remaining names are distributed according to the following categories:
o Management / Supervisor
o Teaching B / Staff
· The “accused employee” draws one name from each category and gives approval of the selected list. This shall be the last opportunity for the employee to request for the adjustment of the selected members of the EDT.
· The final list of names are contacted by the HRD Office for briefing
· The HRD representative, personally selected by the HRD Head, will assume the position of the presiding officer but will not have any decision making powers in the case
· An employee may request exemption from participation for valid reasons such as work load (but must be supported with evidence of over load) and familiarity with the case or the employee concerned
· EDT members after their service are exempted from participation in future cases for two school years after which their names are returned for raffle.
Randomly selected members of the EDT are to adopt the following job descriptions during case proceedings:
1. Attends case meetings
2. Reviews submitted references, evidences and materials in relation to the case
3. Creates a list of interviewees to witness the case and prepares corresponding questions in reference to the interview session
4. Represents the school as witness for other court proceedings, if necessary
5. Ensures the confidentiality of information at all times
6. Recommends a decision to the President for implementation
In recognition of the sensitive roles of the EDT members, the following decorum and behavior shall be expected of those selected:
· All information provided to the EDT members must be kept confidential
· Evidence gathered and provided to the EDT members must be destroyed after the case
· A level of secrecy within the community must be maintained during the hearings to avoid aggravating the situation or stressing the concerned employee
· No communication with other EDT members must be held outside the scheduled sessions
The following guidelines shall serve as the guide book for all Tribunal participants:
1. It shall be the responsibility of the HRD Head to brief the selected EDT members with regards to the case, its background and possible consequences for the offense. It should also be emphasized that the HRD Head must remain unbiased and avoid giving personal comments to avoid influencing the decision makers
2. The EDT is given no more than fifteen (15) working days to investigate and recommend a decision
3. The HRD representative shall be responsible for the following:
o Gathers and reproduces evidences ensuring their proper labeling and distribution to all concerned
o Scheduling of case hearings
o Notification and briefing of interviewees
o Ensure the proper pacing and sequence of interviews
o Ascertains the proper behavior of the tribunal members during case hearings
o Provides assistance to tribunal members in relation to the case
4. All case hearings will be recorded and the final interview transcribed for the reference of the HRD Head
5. The EDT decision making will be done in the presence and with the guidance of the HRD head no more than 15 days after the 1st meeting
6. The final decision need not be unanimous; a majority wins policy will apply.
7. The draft of the final decision will be prepared by the HRD Head and signed by the members of the EDT for endorsement to the President.
A member of the EDT may not inhibit in decision making on the last day.
8. Recommendations given by the EDT are not final and executable without the approval of the school President.
9. The approved final decision will be addressed to the accused and will be issued to the concerned with the approval of the President
It shall be the right of the employee to appeal his case after a decision has been made. A letter in reference to this request must be addressed to the President and a copy must be submitted to the HRD for review.
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