/ 13 May 2022

THE ALLIANCE of Concerned Teachers criticized Sara Duterte-Carpio’s “peace and discipline” vision for education following the announcement of presumptive president Ferdinand ‘Bongbong’ Marcos Jr. that she has been given the education portfolio.

The group said that her vision does not address the crisis in the education sector.

“What we need is a leadership that recognizes the learning crisis, the desperate quality of education, the chronically underpaid status of teachers, and the degeneration of the country’s sense of history and grasp of truth,” the group said.

“Sara Duterte has no recognition of these problems that also worsened under her father’s rule, and has no track record in addressing these. How then can she resolve these crises?” Raymond Basilio, the group’s secretary general, said.

It said that Duterte has a history of repressive rule and propagation of fake news.

“Sara Duterte has proven herself to be a fascist ruler, with zero regard for education and the principles it upholds, just like her father. Under her rule, teachers-unionists suffered relentless red-tagging, schools for Lumad children were forcefully shut down, and the brutal and sham drug war prevailed.  She supported and ran with a known liar, thief, and cheat. She cannot resolve but only exacerbate the grave crises education is under,” Basilio said.

ACT expressed strong opposition to Duterte-Carpio’s appointment and challenged DepEd officials and other freedom-loving individuals to stand for truth and justice and reject a Sara Duterte-led education agency.

“We will not allow another Duterte to further destroy the already crises-ridden education system by enforcing militaristic and repressive measures that will only make smaller this supposedly civilian, democratic space. Schools are meant to be safe spaces for the molding of free and critical minds, not for fascists to create docile citizens. Kaya nga hindi katanggap-tanggap ang posisyon ngayon ng DepEd na agad sumuporta sa posibleng pag-upo ni Sara Duterte bilang Kalihim ng Kagawaran. She embodies so much of what we stand against in the education sector!” Basilio said.