A proposed K+12 basic education-A A +A
The Scribe's Corner
Sunday, October 10, 2010
DIRECTOR'S Cut: (This portion features the thoughts of DepEd 11 Regional Director Susana Teresa B. Estigoy, Ceso IV to all stakeholders and recipients of the efforts to improve the basic education) I do not consider my job as plain work --- rather it is my LIFE. "We have to continually examine what succeeds and fails, and why. We have to uphold and live true to our battlecry and slogan of governance: "Education For All (EFA) 2015: Karapatan ng Lahat, Pananagutan ng Lahat"
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On October 7 of this year, the Department of Education Central office made available in its website (http://www.deped.gov.ph) a copy of the Discussion Paper on the Enhanced K+12 Basic Education Program which focuses on the institutionalization or compulsory implementation of the Kindergarten for all five year old children and the proposed 12 years basic education thereafter.
The report featured the message of President Benigno S. Aquino III for pursuing the additional two years. He said that the 12 years basic education program will give our public school children an even chance of succeeding.
It was mentioned in the discussion paper that enhancing the quality of basic education is urgent and critical, thus the need to come out with this proposal. Low achievement scores in national and international tests placing us in the cellar of those countries that joined the test are said to be reflection of poor quality basic education. It was also stated that our curriculum is designed for 12 years but delivered in 10 years thus causing the inadequate preparation of high school graduates for the world of work, entrepreneurship or higher education. Basing from the statistics supplied in the said report, only the Philippines and two other countries in Unesco's 155 member countries retain a 10-year pre-university education system.
The proposed 12-year program is said to be in cognizance of the urgent and critical concern in line with the priorities of the Aquino Administration of raising the quality of basic education through the enhancement of the curriculum and the expansion of the basic education cycle.
Historically, the proposal of expanding the basic education program started in 1925 with nine surveys and studies recommending for the increase in the number of years in both the elementary and secondary levels wherein the latest which carried the same recommendation was made by the Presidential Task Force on Education in 2008.
It is envisioned that every graduate of the Enhanced K+12 Basic Education Program is an empowered individual who has learned through various means, the capability to engage in autonomous critical thinking and the capacity to transform others and oneself along with the inculcation of the respect to human rights and values, notably, MakaDiyos, Maka-tao, Makabansa and Maka-Kalikasan. It was mentioned that all of those are consistent with the provision in the Philippine Constitution and the Universal Declaration of Education for All.
The primary goal of the proposed program is to create a functional basic education program that will produce productive and responsible citizens equipped with the essential competencies and skills for both life-long learning and employment. This can be done by offering an enhanced and decongested curriculum that is internationally recognized and comparable. This program is also designed to change the public perception that basic education is only a preparation to college or university studies, rather an opportunity to have gainful career or employment and/or self-employment in an increasingly changing globalize environment.
After giving consideration to all proposals, DepEd is now proposing a K-6-4-2 Model. This includes Kindergarten at the age of five, six years of elementary education, four years for junior high school (Grades 7-10) and two years of senior high school (Grades 11 and 12). The last two years in the curriculum intend to provide time for students to consolidate acquired academic skills and competencies with specializations in various disciplines. A full 12 years of basic education will eventually be required for entry into tertiary level education starting school year 2018-2019 or seven years from now.
The implementation of the K+12 program which will follow a phase is proposed to start in SY 2011-2012 with the universal kindergarten and by SY 2012-2013, the new curriculum shall be offered to both the incoming Grade I as well as the incoming junior high school students so that necessary infrastructures and arrangements will be put in place by the start of SY 2016-1017 for the Senior High School.
The above mentioned discussions are still merely a proposal and will undergo fine tuning, massive consultation with various stakeholders, financial study, curriculum review and enhancement, teacher training, legislation and information, education and communication campaign before it will be finally implemented.
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You can access DepEd Updates, latest issuances and other relevant information through our website: http://www.deped.gov.ph. For comments, suggestions and/or contributions, email me at email@example.com. For queries, complains and other concerns, call DepEd Region 11 at (082) 227-9342 or fax to (082) 227-1102 and (082) 221-6147.
Mr. Lorenzo E. Mendoza, M.A. is connected with DepEd Regional Office 11 and currently on study leave through the Australian Endeavour VET Scholarship Grant under the management of Austraining International.
Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on October 11, 2010.