April 21, 2024

Two legislators in the Cordillera has called on the Department of Education to correct the errenous entries about Igorots in the learning modules distributed to millions of learners.
Reps. Maximo Dalog Jr. of Mountain Province and Eric Go Yap of Benguet were referring to the learning module authored by Felicidad N. Remo and Avelina S. Espelita published by St. Matthew’s Publishing Corp., which portrayed the Igorots as having curly black hair.
“We are immeasurably alarmed, offended, and annoyed by such portrayal and description of us just because we are Igorots,” Dalog said in his letter to DepEd Sec. Leonor Briones.
Yap, for his part, said he will file a House resolution inviting DepEd officials to discuss the blunders on learning modules misrepresenting the Igorots.
Yap said he strongly condemns the photos circulating online which showed a portion of learning mo-dule, in a form of a scenario, that discriminates the Igorots due to their supposed appearance.
“It is unbelievable that these made its way to the learning modules of our students. Nakakadismaya. It is not clear whether it forms part of a textbook, a module or a test sheet, but regardless of its form and context, this is an insult and an obvious form of discrimination and a mockery of our rich culture in the Cordillera,” Yap said. 
He said this is not the first time that this happened and urged DepEd to take responsibility over the blunder. 
“I call on the Department of Education to undertake a massive review of its textbooks and other materials used in our schools. I urge Secretary Leonor Briones to issue a department order instructing teachers nationwide to forbid them from using discriminatory statements such as those shown in photos in preparing their modules,” he said.
DepEd-Cordillera Director Estela Cariño has assured they have taken action on some of the learning modules with errors.
Cariño said they have requested the various DepEd offices to check the modules that have wrong and biased depictions of Igorots for necessary corrections.
“We are disheartened that these errors circulate nationwide but we hope our collective efforts will change the wrong concepts about the indigenous peoples like us especially in areas whre Igorots are not the majority,” she said.
An Igorot herself, Cariño has urged Cordillerans to continue the campaign in educating others of the region’s rich heritage.
DepEd-Cordillera Information Officer Georaloy Palao-ay said they have already contacted the division offices that created the learning modules for necessary corrections. He said they were not able to trace some of the learning modules circulating online because they cannot find the source.
Concerned citizens may send errors on learning modules for proper corrections by sending message through email address [email protected], or they may text through Viber at 0961-680-5334.
Netizens are also encouraged to use hashtag #depederrorwatch when posting complaints on social media sites. The hashtag will help monitor the complaints. – Ofelia C. Empian