The Special Program for Employment of Students (SPES) is a program from the Department and Labor and Employment mandated by Republic Act 7323 in 1992 otherwise known as “An act to help poor but deserving students pursue their education by encouraging their employment during summer and/or Christmas vacations, through incentives granted to employers, allowing them to pay only sixty per centum of their salaries or wages and the forty per centum through education vouchers to be paid by government, prohibiting and penalizing the filing of fraudulent and fictitious claims, and for other purposes. It was initially amended by Republic Act 9547 in 2010 that expanded the program coverage and amended certain provisions. Republic Act 10917 which lapsed into new law by end of July 2016 further strengthens the program by increasing the age bracket from 15-30 years old and expanding the number of working days from 20-78 days. This youth employment-bridging program aimed to develop the intellectual capacities of children from poor families, develop their personal and interpersonal skills by hands-on training with establishment partners. Specifically, the program aims to help poor but deserving students continue their education by providing income or augment their income through short term employment during summer and/or school vacation.
The program is conducted every year during the summer period. Participants are assigned to work in private partner establishments such as Mcdonalds, Jollibee, Chowking, Greenwich, Café De Apati, La Familia Sizzlers Catering and Restaurant and Local Government Unit (LGU) of Baliwag.
SPES beneficiaries were deployed last April 28 to private companies. Whereas, some were endorsed to the Barangay Captains to perform administrative duties to barangays of Baliwag. All were instructed to write their daily activity report to monitor the tasks they do every day.
“Working here in Mcdonalds is not difficult. I have a short job experience with fast-food restaurant so I am familiar with the environment.” – Glenn Cruz (Mcdonalds)
Students who are working in Local Government Unit are given the opportunity to learn what is it like is to work in public service and usually are in-charge with issuance of documents such as a barangay clearance, letters, and permits.
Mayor Ferdinand V. Estrella gave his full support to this summer employment program and believes that it would decrease the number of out of school youth through the help of this program. During the SPES Orientation, he gave an inspirational message by sharing to the participants that “Experience is the best teacher”. He also encouraged them to DREAM BIG.