It was late last year that the proposal to pursue K+12 education in the Philippines was publicized. K+12 is Kindergarten plus 12 years in Elementary and High school, to be precise that would be Kinder, Grades 1-6 (elementary education), Grades 7-10 (Junior high) and finally Grades 11-12 (Senior high). The Department of Education is proposing a K-6-4-2 education system model which we all know are used widely abroad. Please read Department of Education’s briefer on the K+12 Basic Education Program.
My point by point blow on K+12 and why I’m not completely smitten with the idea:
1. Public school education in the Philippines is not FREE, contrary to what we know. Parents will need to shell out more money for tuition, transportation, school projects, daily allowance, uniform and so on. As it is true that this could be a sound investment for some but for those who can barely send their child to school everyday, this is an added burden.
2. While K+12 Basic Education is a very noble proposal and a much needed change in our education system, I believe that this is not the right time to implement it. Address the major problem areas first such as shortage of classrooms, books and teachers. Better education starts with a better classroom plus the teacher-student ratio. Our current system is failing because of the QUALITY of education that our students are getting and not because of the QUANTITY. When I was in HS, we were 30 (or 35) in class but today, it’s upto 60 students in a class! To accommodate the number of students, some public schools resort to half day of class for each sections.Can you imagine what they’re learning in half day?
3. If a student does not want to take 2 more senior years in high school, the student will be given a certificate but not a diploma and thus he will not be accepted in College. If in the next years or so after working to save for tuition fees, the student who by now is too old will have to go back to Grades 11 and 12 before he can start his College education.
4. The dropout rate will increase because of financial and practical reasons. Parents who can barely send children to school will tend to ask the child to skip Grades 11 and 12 and start working and earn so the other siblings can go to school as well.
5. Let’s talk budget. It’s obvious that our national budget is not enough to support our current education system, so how will they support the added 2 years? It’s not simple. The curriculum must be changed and decompressed, teachers and classrooms are needed, materials as well, etc. If they are able to raise money for the needed change for K+12’s implementation, why not raise money for new classrooms and address the problems with the teachers?
We can’t compare K+12 in the Philippines to the US. WHY? BECAUSE OF THESE:
— credits: Dadubeeinebiz
6. What is the percentage of public school teachers agreeing to K+12 versus public school teachers opposing? Because first and foremost, DEPED must work hand in hand with teachers to implement K+12 and actually make it work. Teachers are their best resource persons because teachers are working with our old curriculum for the longest time and they would know the ins and outs better than our appointed leaders.
What are the positive effects of K+12 in the Philippines?
1. Private schools are already practicing K12 in a way. This is because they require the following education system:
Kinder 1 & 2, Grades 1-7 in elementary and First – Fourth Year in High school
In fact if you sum it all up that’s 13 years of basic education. President Aquino’s vision is to give public schools the same quantity and quality as that of private schools (but then again, private schools provide proper classrooms, teachers and educational materials in the expense of course of the paying parents).
2. With K+12 the graduates will be given International acceptance as professionals because the standard education requirement has been met.
3. By the time the student graduates in HS or College, he/she will be in legal age and will be allowed to work legally.
4. Because of their age by the time they graduate they are of sound emotional, physical and mental state.
5. The added 2 years will better prepare the students for College and will allow them ample time to think and decide which course to take.
The target implementation of K+12 Basic Education Program in the Philippines is on school year 2012-2013. And I would like to commend the Department of Education for engaging media and bloggers on special meetings to talk about the proposal and its development. I can see that they’re in the process of fine tuning the law and that they are open for rebuttals and debates. I would be happy to see the Department of Education and representatives from different teachers’ association or organization to create a forum and discuss matters that are important and are relevant on this topic to hopefully address whatever the concerns are.
If you please, you can also read my post about