DepEd K to 12: A View from Mindanao

Ten years of quality education are better than twelve years of mediocre ones

The Mindanao Observer June 09, 2012

In what could prove to be a major blunder, the Department of Education (DepEd) pushed through with its plan to add two (2) years to the basic education system of the country. Despite widespread clamor from parents and students for the department to reassess the wisdom of the move, the DepEd leadership saw it necessary to proceed with its plan.

The K+12 program is the government’s new program that adds two years to the existing ten-year basic education program (six years for elementary and four years for secondary school) and further requires finishing kindergarten as a precondition for those entering grade one.

The opposition to the new program is not without merit. Various sectors have been pushing that instead of lengthening the education of the students, thus prolonging the agony of parents, the DepEd must instead set their sights on improving the quality of the education that it provides.

Widespread corruption and lack of transparency have been major reasons why the department has failed to improve the quality of education in the country. The products of the country’s education system have continuously deteriorated through the years although there are still many who manage to defy odds by sheer determination and self-motivation.

In the hiring of teachers alone, so many irregularities need to be addressed and resolved. Selling of teaching positions to the highest bidders has been rampant. Instead of judging applicants based on aptitude and ability to impart knowledge to students, the “lagay” system makes sure that less qualified applicants who are willing to shell out cash get the nod.

There are also DepEd officials who ask for favors from applicants and active teachers who wish to be transferred to areas nearer their respective homes. Why are these allowed?

The teachers are the backbone of the country’s education system. Failure to hire the right ones will drastically affect what the students stand to learn. Is it not wise to first make sure that all the teachers possess the right skills to teach before even assessing if the students need more time to learn or not?

The department must also address the irresponsible practice of many teachers in rural areas who only report to work 3 to 4 times a week instead of the mandated 5. This easily subtracts 20 to 40% of learning time for students. If one does the math, in a 10-year program, that translates to 2 to 4 years already. Is the society not scandalized by this?

This is just talking about teachers. There are also problems with textbooks, classrooms, and politicians meddling in DepEd matters.

Despite all these nagging problems that need immediate attention, the Department of Education decides to lengthen the basic education of the students. Talk about prolonging the agony.

This department is in a state of denial.


A week ago....

Maguindanao, problemado sa K to 12; kapos sa guro, libro

ISULAN, Sultan Kudarat – Hayagang inamin ni Department of Education (DepEd) Maguindanao 1 Superintendent Bai Meriam A. Kawit, al hadja, na may nakikitang problema ang lalawigan sa programang K to 12 ng DepEd.
Sa panayam noong Mayo 8 sa kanyang tanggapan sa Shariff Aguak, Maguindanao, sinabi ni Kawit na kulang ang panahon para mabigyang-linaw ang mga magulang sa layunin ng programa, partikular ang mga nasa liblib na lugar sa Maguindanao.

Dagdag ni Kawit, kulang din ang kasanayan ng mga gurong nabigyan ng subject sa dagdag na curriculum, bukod pa sa hanggang ngayon ay wala pang nakararating na textbooks sa lalawigan, sa kabila ng pahayag ng pamunuan ng Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) na handa na ang mga ito.
Isang malaking dahilan din, ani Kawit, ang sinasabi ng pamunuan ng Deped ARMM na naubos na ang pondong ipinagkaloob ng gobyerno sa rehiyon bagamat hindi sinabi ni Kawit ang aktuwal na halagang inilaan para sa pagpapatupad ng K to 12 program ng DepEd.
Sa kaugnay na usapin, at sa kabila ng pagtatangkang makapanayam si Deped-ARMM secretary, Atty. Jamar Kulayan, hindi ito nakuhanan ng pahayag dahil wala ito sa lalawigan, ayon sa kanyang mga kawani.
Sa isang hiwalay na usapin, sinabi ni Kawit na problema rin sa Maguindanao ang kakulangan sa mga guro, dahil sa hindi matukoy na bilang ng mga papeles ng mga aplikanteng guro na hanggang ngayon ay nakabimbin sa ARMM. – Leo P. Diaz


Davaoeños not impressed by DepEd’s K+12: survey

Written By: Kristianne Fusilero
Tuesday, 12 June 2012

More than half of the Davaoeños are not in favor of the K+12 program of the Department of Education claiming that it will be an added burden to the already strained household budgets, the survey of the University of Mindanao’s Institute of Public Opinion (IPO) revealed.

Dr. Maria Linda Arquiza, director the IPO, said yesterday in the weekly press forum at Cafe Rysus in SM City Davao that the results of the survey showed that 55.43% of the Davaoeños disagreed with the policy.

The IPO, under the UM Research and Publication Center, was established in March this year to provide quality survey results and adheres to integrity, professionalism and efficiency in publishing its results. The main focus of the center is to conduct surveys that relates to the popular concerns of the people of Davao.

Citing the results of their recent survey, she said majority of the respondents reasoned that the program only means that the parents are likely to “spend more for the additional fees.” The respondents also explained that the additional years are not the solution.

The survey was conducted on May 16 to 26 with 1,151 respondents from the three congressional districts in the city.

“Since K-12 is an issue that affects every Filipino, it is but right that public opinion of the Davaoeños about it be heard,” Arquiza said, citing that the survey is timely now that DepEd has started to pilot test the implementation of having two more years in basic education.

She said government officials should listen to the opinion of the people and do something about it as the Davaoeños believed that the educational system itself is faulty, due to the lack of budget, school buildings and high student-classroom ratio.

But Eva Antepuesto, administrative officer of DepEd-Davao City Division, said they will still continue to implement the K +12 program. The universal kindergarten started last school year.

She said it is a basic education program that requires students to undergo kindergarten and enroll to additional two years of schooling. The briefer from DepEd stated that the program “offers a more balanced approach to learning that will enable children to acquire and master lifelong learning skills.”

Pagpapatupad ng K to 12 program ng DepEd sa Davao City, tinutulan