/ 27 July 2022

YOUTH and student leaders slammed the Marcos administration for pushing the mandatory Reserved Officers’ Training Corps program for senior high school students.

“Amid a crisis on student dropouts and mental health problems, Marcos’ solution is to add to the burden of students by forcing them to go under ROTC,” the youth leaders belonging to Akbayan Youth, Student Council Alliance of the Philippines and Bukluran ng mga Progresibong Iskolar said in a joint statement.

The groups said that more than four million students dropped out of their schools at the height of the pandemic, and more than half of students reported that online classes have affected their mental health.

“Marcos’ priority on mandatory ROTC shows that he is out of touch with the needs of the youth and students,” the youth leaders said.

“He vows to end horror stories on educational materials but failed to provide a plan to improve competencies on science, math and reading where Filipino students rank lowest globally,” they added.

They vowed to block the implementation of the mandatory ROTC program.