Personalities versus Policies

Philippine politics will remain in its current quagmire if we continue to discuss personalities and not the actual issues. Seeing celebrities as political candidates in the coming Philippine election leaves very little hope.

Above copied from Metro Manila Politics
Similarly, Philippine basic education will continue to deteriorate if we cling on ideology instead of evidence. A year ago, Steven J. Klees and Omar Qargha wrote in the journal Prospects a scathing comment against the World Bank:
The evidence for how private education leads to better achievement is also very weak. Despite the many studies of private schooling and student achievement (with indeterminate results), the push for privatization is based on ideology, not evidence. Some years ago, one of us attended a meeting at the World Bank, soliciting comments on a health-sector– oriented World Development Report. The Bank’s presenter pointed out that, in many poor countries, poor people chose to be treated at private health clinics for a fee instead of going to free public clinics. This was touted as evidence of the success and value of privatization. Our response was, and is, that to the contrary, this situation is simply evidence of the success of 30 years of neoliberal ideology, in which public clinics had been systematically decimated, ending up without doctors, nurses, or medicine. The same has happened in education. Privatization is supposed to help meet the growing education gap resulting from years of attacks on the public sector in many countries, but all it does is replace an attempt to develop good public policy with the vagaries of charity or the single-mindedness of profit-making.
Along this line, I would like to share a recent statement I have read from one of the groups that have filed a petition before the Supreme Court to stop K-12:

Statement on Unified Petitioners Against K-12 Mobilization 
13 November 2015️

The Council of Teachers and Staff of Colleges and Universities in the Philippines (CoTeSCUP) remains steadfast in its conviction that RA 10533, otherwise known as the K-12 Law, is unconstitutional. We believe that this law violates several provisions of the 1987 Constitution that are intended to protect parents, students, and educators, and uphold academic freedom, and relevant and meaningful education for all. We persevere in our hope that the Honorable Justices of the Supreme Court of the Philippines will find merit in all the petitions filed before the highest court, and issue a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) against the implementation of the said law.

While we support the stand of fellow petitioners under the Unified Petitioners Against K-12 (UPAK) to continue collective action for the suspension of K-12, we appeal for sobriety and stand in our conviction that our action should remain issue-based and transcend ideological partisanship. We discourage any initiative that resorts to name-calling and other strategies that take away the attention of those concerned from the core issues being raised against the said law. We uphold the rights of petitioners to their respective political beliefs, fully aware that the suspension of the K-12 Law, not common ideology, is the unifying thread that binds all petitioners. We respect the right of the government, through the Office of the Solicitor General, to respond and defend the government's position on the petitions, as we believe that in the end, the rule of law and the voice of reason will prevail in deciding on the merits of our petitions.

We reiterate our appeal to our Honorable Justices to expedite their deliberations on our petitions and issue a decision that is just and fair to all concerned sectors. We ask our Justices to recognize that time is of essence, and that the power is in their hands to prevent the disenfranchisement of thousands of students who deserve to enroll in tertiary education in June 2016. We expect the Justices' judicious and impartial act on our petitions now that the all sectors concerned have articulated their convictions and position on the said law.

Suspend K-12 Now!