Be Careful with Educational Experts and Give Sara a Chance

Rene Luis Tadle

Repost from Facebook

This came out of my memory feed today. I remember how the Aquino government together with the so-called education experts and well-experienced education managers cajoled, rammed, and made false promises to convince students, teachers, and parents to accept the wisdom of additional two years of basic education despite the objections from various sectors. Thus, in 2015, together with other groups and individuals, CoTeSCUP questioned the constitutionality of the K-12 Law in the Supreme Court. SC declared that the law was constitutional and thus dismissed our petition, noting that it is within the police power of the state to enact educational laws including the K-12 Law. However, it noted as well that “It is not for the Court to look into the wisdom or propriety of legislative determination.” (CoTeSCUP et. al, vs. DOLE et al. G.R. No. 216930). Since then, studies have shown that K-12 Law failed to live up to its promise (Orbeta et al., 2019 Manansan, 2020; Orbeta & Potestad, 2020).

Very recently, some groups, educational experts, educational managers, and teachers have questioned the qualifications of Sara Duterte to be the Education Secretary. Well, as Secretary of Education, VP-elect Sarah has the power to hire and consult experts. Department Secretaries do that all the time. But this time she must make sure that she widens the list of possible experts beyond the usual experts who are now insinuating that her qualifications are wanting. Further, she must also consult and dialogue with classroom experts—the teachers. As Mayor of Davao City, she was the concurrent Chairperson of the City School Board. Thus, she had to deal with budgetary constraints of running a local school system and respond to various concerns from the representatives of the other sectors that composed the Local School Board (e.g., teachers and non-academic personnel organizations). Thus, it is reasonable to expect that she is well-grounded and surely not “tabula rasa” on school operations at the local level. Such knowledge and experience are important for the badly needed bottoms-up approach to policymaking in DepEd. Let us not prejudge. Allow her to lay down her plans (our system allows us to examine her plans), and give her time to implement them.

Talk News TV: "K to 12 Fiasco". Atty. Sonny Matula of FFW, Prof Rene Tadle of UST and Prof. Rita Cucio of SBC with Ka Mentong Laurel.