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Senators Divided on DepEd’s 'K+12' Years Education System

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Senators Divided on DepEd’s 'K+12' Years Education System

Manila Bulletin
October 6, 2010, 8:08pm

MANILA, Philippines (PNA) — The proposal of the Department of Education (DepEd) to add two more years to basic education drew mixed reactions in the Senate.

Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile expressed support to the DepEd’s "K+12" or kindergarten plus 12 years basic education.

”We need it for competitiveness. We are underrated by other countries, our educational system. It is painful for others. But for the country we have to do it,” Enrile told Senate reporters.

When asked where to get the funding for the program, Enrile did not give a categorical answer but he continued "we'll have to find for education. It is the future of the country that is involved.”

Senate Majority Leader Vicente Sotto III has to use the floor to deliver privilege speech, expressing his opposition to the DepEd’s K+12 program which he said is additional burden to the poor family facing difficulties in sending children to school.

”More years in school translate to more expenses for two years more. It would be more difficult now for parents to utter words that at least our children were able to finish high school,” Sotto said.

Sotto said there is no clear benefit to adding two years to basic education.

”The second year college student today is as unemployed as the high school graduate, not because of any lack of intelligence or skill, but because our economy cannot generate enough jobs as there are job-seekers,” Sotto said.

Sotto said adding two years to basic education will bloat further the country’s budget deficit.

”Our national budget is unable to fund the present numbers of years in basic education. Then we will add two more years? We need quality education, not quantity of years in education. We need more schools, not more years in school,” Sotto reasoned out.

Sotto said it is not true that the country is being left behind in terms of quality of education since tens of thousands of the Koreans and other nationals come to the Philippines to study English as well nursing and medicine courses.

”This proposal to add two years may be borne out of a perception that we are not as good as others. We are again in self-flagellation mode of our educational system,” Sotto said.

”These are the problems worth looking into, not adding two years of expenses to our students and parents. It is a total waste of time, effort and money,” Sotto added.

The K+12 program will add two years to the basic education of students after they finish 4 years in high school. Its implementation is set to begin by 2012.