/ 7 February 2023

SENATOR Sherwin Gatchalian wants an inquiry on the state of education in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao to address low enrollment and improve learner outcomes in the region.

“Several decades of armed conflict and civil unrest have greatly affected the quality of basic education as evident in the performance of BARMM in several education indicators,” Gatchalian said.

Senate Resolution No. 455 will review the status of the implementation of the education provisions of the Organic Law for the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao and the Bangsamoro Education Code of 2021.

The BEC of 2021 was signed into law pursuant to the mandate of the BARMM organic law to enact legislation strengthening the Madaris school system.

The senator noted that the net enrollment rate, especially of Junior and Senior High School students, has been a persistent problem in BARMM.

Gatchalian also commented on latest Cohort Survival data for BARMM that said that for every 100 children enrolled in Grade 1 in School Year 2010-2011, only 17 were able to graduate Grade 12 in SY 2021-2022.

This is substantially lower than the national average of 57 Grade 12 graduates in SY 2021-2022 out of every 100 Grade 1 enrollees in SY 2010-2011.

The lawmaker was also alarmed by the results of the last seven National Achievement Tests administered in the region, which reveal low performance in English, Science, and Mathematics.

“Mahalagang masuri natin ang mga hamong kinakaharap ng ating mga kababayan sa BARMM pagdating sa edukasyon. Nais nating tiyakin na pagdating sa dekalidad na edukasyon at mga oportunidad sa magandang kinabukasan, hindi maiiwan ang ating mga kababayan sa rehiyon,” Gatchalian said.