DIRECTOR'S Cut: (This portion features the thoughts of Atty. Alberto T. Escobarte, CESO IV, Regional Director, DepED Region 11 to all stakeholders and recipients of the efforts to improve the basic education). "Let me assure you that in the performance of my official duties and even my private acts will be guided and guarded by my Oath of Office, The Panunumpa ng Kawani ng Gobyerno, the Philippine Constitution and all the laws that govern our actions."

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A record crowd of 10,000 people composed mostly of DepED personnel and officials from Davao Region trooped to the University of Southeastern Philippines (USEP) Gymnasium to celebrate the second year anniversary of the K to 12 Law, RA 10533, otherwise known as the Enhanced Basic Education Act of 2013 on May 15, 2015.

The DepEd delegates headed by Regional Director Alberto T. Escobarte, Curriculum Chief Luzminda O. Onor and other regional chiefs and superintendents and assistant superintendents from the 10 divisions of Region XI were joined by stakeholders composed of local government officials, administrators of private institutions and colleges, industry and business leaders and members of the media.

Wearing white polo shirt with logo "I Love K to 12" in front and "Tayo Para sa Edukasyon" (Stand for Education) at the back, the DepEd personnel, mostly teachers in the basic education showed their mettle in the chants and yells while their students showcased their talents in singing, dancing, acting and reciting which won them not only local but national and world recognition as well.

In Luzon, over 3,500 educators, parents, and students from the National Capital Region (NCR), Region IV-A (Calabarzon), and Region III (Central Luzon) went to the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) to celebrate the milestones of the K to 12 Program and to express support for its continued implementation.

President Benigno S. Aquino III who was the guest speaker underscored the importance of collective efforts in education, saying, "Sama-sama nating isusulong ang sinimulan nating K to 12 Program; at isang bansa nating iaangat ang antas ng edukasyon sa Pilipinas."

For his part, DepEd Secretary Secretary Brother Armin Luistro FSC said, "Kailangan nating siguraduhin na ang iiwan natin sa ating mga kababayan lalung-lalo na ang kabataan ay ang mga reporma na magbibigay sa kanila ng kahandaan."

He continued by saying in Filipino. "Walang hamon na hindi nahahanapan ng solusyon; walang hamon na hindi nagkakaroon ng sagot. Ang pusong Pinoy ay nakikita natin sa ating mga guro na handa para sa ating kabataan," He added, "Bago mag-umpisa ang isang programa ng gobyerno, naghahanda na tayo para rito."

Reacting to various protests and threat of issuance of TRO from Supreme Court brought by a number of petitioners, the Secretary firmly said, "Sa atin pong pagsusulong ng K to 12 reform na pang-limang taon na po, marami ang nagsasabi na hindi raw handa ang Pilipinas. Wala namang pangmatagalan na reporma na walang oposisyon. Kung may oposisyon, kasama ito sa demokrasya. Pinapakinggan po natin ang lahat ng boses, pero ang mga boses na kailangan nating isulong ay ang mga boses na para sa kabataan,"

Luistro emphasized, "Ito na po ang huling milya sa ating marathon. Kitang-kita ko na po ang bunga; kitang-kita ko na ang finish line. Ipaglalaban natin na ang Pilipino, kapag sama-sama, kayang-kaya natin. Napatunayan na po natin iyan."

DepEd Undersecretary Rizalino Rivera and National Youth Commission Assistant Secretary Dingdong Dantes also made public their support to the program capitalizing on the principle that education is not only a sole responsibility of one person but a communal commitment.

In ABS-CBN Bandila on May 29 where the DepEd Secretary was a guest, Anchor Julius Babao asked the Secretary of the opton of DepED in case the Supreme Court would issue TRO on K to 12 Program. The Secretary confidently said that the Department would instead move forward because he does not believe the Supreme Court would issue a TRO to such noble reform in education.

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