Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano on Sunday said the House will review the program amid concerns that it is not living up to its promise that students will gain skills for employment after senior high school.
Miguel De Guzman
DepEd welcomes K-12 review; Palace hands off
Janvic Mateo, Alexis Romero (The Philippine Star) - October 22, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Education (DepEd) has welcomed the reported plan of the House of Representatives to review the effectiveness of the K-12 basic education reform program as Malacañang said it would not meddle in the matter.

“Congress and the DepEd have worked closely together since the previous budget hearings to address the issues of the K-12 program,” the DepEd said in a statement yesterday.

“A dedicated review session will provide an appropriate venue to comprehensively discuss concerns about the program and plot out corresponding solutions,” it added.

“We will leave it to the wisdom of Congress,” presidential spokesman Salvador Panelo said.

In his previous speeches, President Duterte revealed that his daughter Veronica had asked him to scrap the K-12 program.

Panelo, however, said it would be Congress that would decide on whether or not to retain the program.

Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano on Sunday said the House will review the program amid concerns that it is not living up to its promise that students will gain skills for employment after senior high school.

“Many schools still lack equipment, whether it is automotive, electrical or sports. So there are issues that we have to address,” Cayetano said.

The review will enable the agency to provide the status of the policies and programs, and identify its achievements and challenges since its implementation of the basic education reform program in 2012, according to DepEd.

“With an additional P650 million in the proposed 2020 budget, specifically for the improvement of the 12-year basic education program, the DepEd commits to coordinate and collaborate with the members of Congress in strategizing the effective implementation of the program in adherence to Republic Act No. 10533 or the Enhanced Basic Education Act of 2013 for the benefit of the learners,” the agency said. 

“Likewise, the DepEd hopes the outcome of the review will spur renewed commitment and initiatives among lawmakers, advocates and other stakeholders in aid of realizing the K-12 program’s overall goal: hone holistically developed Filipino learners with 21st century skills,” it added.

Implemented during the previous administration, the K-12 program overhauled the basic education curriculum in the country by adding two years of senior high school.

Students taking Grades 11 and 12 were given the option to choose among four tracks: academic, technical-vocational-livelihood, sports and arts. 

Earlier this year, the DepEd denied reports that it would stop the implementation of the program, noting that it is mandated by law and could not be arbitrarily halted. 

“As with any law, the implementation, amendment, expansion or repeal of the K-12 program is within the ambit of the legislative branch of the government, comprised of the Senate of the Philippines and the House of Representatives,” it said in a statement in May.

The agency also stood by its position that the program is a necessity and halting it “might prove detrimental to the accelerating and increasing demands in education.”

“The challenges still abound but the support of the national and local government, and of stakeholders in the private sector and the community, has been overwhelming that it silences doubts and strengthens the resolve to move forward with change today,” DepEd said.

It noted that the program has seen numerous gains for the basic education system, including the high enrollment and transition rates in senior high school.

“The DepEd calls on the public to make a habit of consulting the official website and social media accounts of the department before spreading assertions and engaging (in) discussions on its policies, programs and projects that may influence the opinion, decision or action of our primary stakeholders our learners,” the agency added.

DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION K-12 BASIC EDUCATION REFORM PROGRAM
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