Local News: Implementation of K to 12 to Grade 1 and Grade 7 this School Year 2012-2013
June 4, 2012 is the opening of classes for School Year (SY) 2012-2013, and the K to 12 Basic Education Curriculum (BEC) will go full blast for all Grade 1 pupils as well as Grade 7 (First Year High School) students all over the country. The new curriculum (K to 12) stands for Kindergarten plus 12 years basic education includes six (6) years of elementary and six (6) years of high school (four years junior high school and two years senior high school). It is geared toward the development of a holistically developed Filipino with 21st century skills who is ready for employment, entrepreneurship, middle-level skills development and higher education upon graduation from high school. With the addition of two years in high school, parents will be freed of the burden of spending for college education of their children just to make them employable.
According to the survey conducted by SEAMEO INNOTECH 2011, the Philippines is the last in Asia and one of only three countries in the world with ten year pre-university program. This results to poor quality education and higher unemployment rate among our high school and college graduates. The Trends in International Math and Science Survey (TIMSS) shows that our country ranked 23rd in students performance (grade 4 Math and Science) out of 25 countries: 34th out of 38 countries in High School Math and 43rd out of 46 countries in High School Science. This sad state in our basic education can be partly attributed to the congested basic education curriculum. As compared to the current program, K to 12 offers a more balanced approach to learning that will enable children to acquire and master lifelong learning skills (as against a congested curriculum) for the 21st century.
The K to 12 curriculum is a collaborative effort of the curriculum specialists, subject specialists, practitioners and education stakeholders representing NGOs, business and industry, public and private higher education institutions, educational associations, government agencies such as CHED, TESDA, NEDA, DSWD and DOLE. Moreover, K to 12 BEC Program seeks to realize an educational standard which is at par with the international standards and graduates who are well equipped with technical and/or vocational skills ready and prepared for work. It also seeks to broaden and strengthen stakeholders’ support in the improvement of basic education outcomes.
DepEd further announced that the government budget for K to 12 program this School Year 2012-2013 is Php 238.8 Billion including Php 2.4 Billion for kinder which started last year.
It further assures the public that funds would be released and used properly and that they will regularly package and disseminate information on agency budgets, bidding and procurement documents and SALNs of Senior Government Officials to insure transparency and accountability. They will also see to it that funds and resources for this program will not be lost to corruption.*
LELANIE G. FRANCO
Bata National High School Department Head