K-12 Education Program Starts this Year
On June 13, the Philippine Public Schools system will open its doors to both new and old students. This time, it will follow the new program: K-12. Qualified private schools will also open its doors to basic education students.
Unlike the previous, the number of years to graduate high school is increased from 10 year to 12 years. The child will start in Kindergarten and finish Grade VI. He/she continues to Grade VII or Junior High School and proceed to Senior High School (SHS) and then continue studying for another two years to finish his secondary education. However, if the child wishes to look for a job after completing Junior High School, he can enroll at the vocational technical course of his choice. Those who graduated from the SHS can proceed to college.
This school year 2016-2017 and 2017-2018, there will be no enrollment in the first year college as the first graduate of the K-12 Curriculum will be in March 2018. However, those students who graduated high school before April 2016 may enroll in the first year college in school which will open for first year college.
K-12 Program is a strategic move by the government to ensure the production of competent graduates who are highly skilled to put up and manage businesses and very employable work personnel.
Kindergarten is a prerequisite to K-12 basic education. It will adversely affect an estimated 13,600 teachers and 1,400 non-teaching staff in the higher education institutions as they may loss their jobs due to lack of enrollees in the first year college.
For one thing, the new curriculum needs additional 30, 000 new classrooms, 30 000 new teachers and 6,000 non-teaching staff. Nevertheless, private sector has shown interest and support to the K-12 program. Makati Business Club, Philippine Business for Education, Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Management Association of the Philippines, the Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines, Employers Confederation of the Philippines, American Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines, German-Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and the Australia-New Zealand Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines have been supporting the k-12 Program which covers Kindergarten, six (6) year Primary Education, four (4) years of Jr. High School and two (2) years Sr. High School.
The K-12 is designed to provide solution to the widespread unemployment among young Filipinos and respond to the needs of some 30 million young Filipinos ages below 24 years old. The TESDA will issue National Certificates after completion of a vocational/technical course at the high school level to assist the six (6) million unemployed by providing the needed skills employers require. The SHS curriculum will enable higher education institutions to focus on specifics of their degree offerings instead of consuming time to remedy the inadequate competence of graduates of the previous 10-year basic education program.
The adaption of K-12 will increase the students’ population which will require 66, 800 classrooms, 39, 000 additional teachers, textbooks, furniture, and for other needs.
Moreover, K-12 is designed to catch up with the international standard of education. Above all, the program will produce graduates who are loving, loyal, patriotic and whose interest is for the best of the Philippines and for the Filipinos./MP