Update on 3 Salary Grade Rule on Promotions

The Civil Service Commission has circularized, through MC No. 18 s. 2016, policy guidelines governing three-salary grade limitation on promotion, superseding MC No. 3, s. 2001. The new circular identified 7 exceptions to the limitation and clarified that the rule does not apply to the following personnel actions: transfers incidental to promotion

Understanding Overtime Pay for Government Employees

I must have been so busy trying new recipes in November 2015 that I missed out on the new policy issued by the CSC and DBM on overtime services and overtime pay for government employees (CSC-DBM Joint Memorandum Circular No.1, s. 2015). Shameful but I have to admit, it was

HAMMAM: Bathing the Turkish Way

They say that apart from it's food and scenic places, another way of best experiencing Turkey is by getting the traditional Turkish bath or the so-called hammam.  I've heard friends here talk about it and the way hammam's done - the real, traditional, authentic way - is too much for my conservative Filipina side.

Conduct Prejudicial to the Service

When a final decision says it's a private monetary obligation, never pay out of public funds. Some learn this the hard way. Take a look at this November 10, 2015 Supreme Court decision in the consolidated cases of Office of the Ombudsman v. Roger F. Borja; Lorna S. Prudente and Damaso

Experiencing Denmark

The decision to buy tickets in December, a time when prices are up, was an attempt to ease our holiday sadness. They say that in non-peak seasons, tickets from Ankara to Denmark and back would only cost somewhere around 300-350 USD. We got ours at about thrice that price. Did we regret it?

Paternity Leave

"Oh the glory of having kids!" Yep, so we've heard. After 7 months of being married, we've grown familiar to the community of people either eager to have children or not have children, and those who are busy poking their noses into other people's reproductive life. Anyway, now that reproduction is often

PAG ASA ARKA Foundation: Cultivating Hope in Children


"When I approach a child, he inspires in me two sentiments — tenderness for what he is and respect for what he may become."   — Louis Pasteur, French chemist and microbiologist If you've been born, raised, and schooled a Catholic, I guess you will agree with me when I say that

A Day in Ulus

When you are in a country that is attracting recent international media attention for all unpleasant reasons, the last thing you'd ever want to do is be outside the comfort of your home. But to be crippled with fear is not an option when you know that you might never

Women Judging Women

Let me tell you about two women. The first I met at a seminar. She was confident, fluent, and exuded this really powerful vibe that was very intimidating. When we were asked to introduce ourselves in little groups, she described herself as an all-out career woman. Her exact statement was -

Understanding Rehabilitation Leave


I'm writing about rehabilitation leave today because I remember one of my former students who went looking for me at my former office. At that time, I thought it was just another of those wanting to take a special exam or seek reconsideration of grades but I was surprised to