Notwithstanding the pandemic, these activities rounded up the Academy’s last quarter of 2020:
We conducted six regular programs by way of distance learning via Zoom—the Orientation Seminar-Workshop for Newly Appointed Clerks of Court from the National Capital Judicial Region (NCJR), Regions I to IV and VI to XIII; the Orientation Seminar-Workshop for Newly Appointed Court Stenographers in two batches, Regions II and IV in November and Regions I to III in December; three Career Enhancement Programs (CEP) respectively for Clerks of Court (Regions I to III), Court Interpreters (Region IV), and First Level Court Sheriffs (Regions IV to VIII). The holding of the 52nd Pre-Judicature Program completed the Academy’s regular program offerings.
The following special focus programs were also delivered through distance learning via Zoom:a Colloquium on Intellectual Property for the Judiciary for representatives from our courts nationwide as well as from the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHIL) and the United Kingdom Intellectual Property Office; a Competency Enhancement Training in Handling Cases Involving Children for judges, branch clerks of court, court interpreters, court social workers, prosecutors, PAO lawyers, local social workers and police officers from the NCJR and Regions II to V, VII, VIII and XII, including some representatives from the Consuelo Alger Foundation, our program partner for this training; two batches of the Design and Delivery of Online Trainings for PHILJA officials and personnel as well as some PHILJA Curriculum Review Committee members which we conducted in partnership with the International Development Law Organization (IDLO); a Seminar-Workshop on Dangerous Drugs Law for judges, prosecutors and law enforcers of the NCJR; and five batches of the Training Seminar on the 2019 Amendments to the Rules of Civil Procedure and Evidence which were attended by Court of Appeals Justices and court attorneys in the Manila, Visayas and Mindanao stations, respectively, as well as judges (including those newly appointed) from the NCJR and various regions and representatives from the Office of the Court Administrator.
PHILJA also lent a hand in the first ever Virtual Convention of the Philippine Trial Judges League, Inc. which was entitled “Judicial Stability in a Time of Pandemic.”
The Philippine Mediation Center Office, in furtherance of Alternative Dispute Resolution, reported the following updates and activities: Studies on Proposing Revisions of the Guidelines on Court-Annexed Mediation (CAM) and Judicial Dispute Resolution (JDR) in Civil Cases in light of the implementation of the 2019 Amendments to the Revised Rules of Civil Procedure; and Pilot-testing of Online Mediation in the Court of Appeals. The production of a video entitled “Away sa Mana” and the creation of a PMCO Policy Review Committee (new initiative) completed the list of PMCO undertakings for the year.
New decisions of the Supreme Court were noted and reminders given on doctrinal rulings, as well as on newly issued Court orders, resolutions, and circulars through our website http://philja.judiciary.gov.ph. We also took note of new OCA circulars.
As we close 2020, I thank our ever-reliable officials and staff, our exceptional Corps of Professors and lecturers, as well as our generous program partners for giving their best to the Academy. Special thanks to our Chief Justice Diosdado M. Peralta and to the Supreme Court for the solid support of all our programs and activities. Above all, thanks to God Almighty, the Source of all good things.