December 5, 2023

A reaction on the DepEd K to 12 program

The K to 12 program was crafted to improve the quality education with the expectation of producing relevant graduates. But there are lapses in the actual implementation. Some of these are:

1. The original proposal was basic education should be 12 years – six to seven years in elementary and from four to five years in the secondary level. In actual implementation, the elementary level is still six years and secondary level was divided into junior high – four years and senior high – six years.

2. Due to the abrupt implementation of the program, teachers were delegated to revise and develop the curriculum. Teachers attended seminars and workshops on the preparation of curriculum resources as well as instructional facilities and reading materials in compliance with the requirements in achieving the objectives of the revised curriculum. Instead of adhering to their teacher-learning activities, the teachers deviated from their classroom duties and sacrificed their time doing supervisors’ obligations.

3. The use of mother tongue as a medium of instruction in the lower primary grades has contributed to the alarming number of students who did not learn to read and write, among others. I do not agree in using the native language as a medium of instruction because of inadequate curriculum resources as well as the absence of relevant instructional facilities printed in the dialect.

4. The authority of teachers in instilling discipline among students has been limited. Teachers are duty bound to abide with the nature of uncontrollable behavioral variables among school children. The teachers have to enhance disciplinary measures without necessarily shouting for the enforcement of desirable class discipline, for fear of mistaken abuse. For instance, instructing a student to listen may already imply abuse, so teachers should take steps to properly manage behaviors through orientations.

5. On the inevitable suspension of classes, teachers should be prepared for distance learning. Modular instruction consists of reference materials and questions for the learners to reflect their understanding and sustainable answers. On the other hand, the use of computerized instruction, email or online assignment, Internet homework or other means of media shall be applied in lieu of suspended classes. Modern teachers and resourceful instructors are presumed computer literate who could initiate remedial measures to comply with the curricular standard requirements to minimize the existence of no read, no write among learners.

6. The alarming loss of interest in learning with prevalent absences from classroom instruction due to poverty and illiteracy. The application of sustainable andragogy approach with adult instruction is recommended. The andragogy strategy of adult instruction caters to the adult learners’ interest on earning while learning. The teacher-learning process is basically integrated literacy with livelihood skills training. From hereon, the theories learned shall be transformed into skills or actions in converting ideals into reality, through project application with sustainable accomplishment. — AGAPITO P. DELMAS, Ph.D., La Trinidad, Benguet