/ 6 July 2021

THE CRISIS in education shown on the World Bank report was a result of government inaction on several problems that have bugged the country for years, ACT Teachers Partylist Rep. France Castro said on Monday.

Castro lamented that improving the quality of education has not been a government priority.

“The education crisis started long before the Covid19 pandemic hit our country,” she said.

The lawmaker said that the problem would not have worsened had the government given priority to the perennial problems of education and provided adequate funds for classrooms, learning materials, facilities like laboratories and libraries, better learning environment for the youth, and substantial salary for teachers and education support personnel.

She added that the World Bank Report, which said that more than 80 percent of Filipino children do not know what they should know, is not surprising.

“The World Bank report and the results of three international assessments that Filipino students recently took part in which included the 2018 Program for International Student Assessment, the 2019 Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study and the 2019 Regional Report of the Southeast Asia Primary Learning Metrics should be a wakeup call for the Department of Education and the Duterte administration,” Castro said.

She added that DepEd’s “incompetence” immensely impacts teachers and students’ performance.

“Among the outputs of DepEd’s incompetence and haphazard implementation of so-called education reform is the curriculum congestion, which compromises adequate teaching time and students’ deeper understanding. This is worsening under the case of blended learning scheme,” Castro said.

She added that the results of international assessments prove that the K to 12 system did not enhance the quality of basic education.

The “chopsuey method” where teachers are forced to teach a little of everything is ineffective in attaining a mastery of skills in Math and Science, Castro said.

“Malalaki ang class size, kulang ang mga libro at modyul, walang gadgets o access sa internet, gutom ang mga bata, sobrang daming dagdag na gawain ng guro, kulang ang classroom, at hindi makabalik sa face-to-face classes, ilan lang ito sa mga kinakaharap ng mga kabataan at guro ng ating bansa sa ilalim ng tumitinding krisis sa edukasyon,” Castro stated.