K+12: Promoting Change in the Philippine Educational Landscape by Eva Imingan



By Eva B. Imingan
Olongapo City

It was a very pleasant and enriching experience to have become a part of the curriculum mapping for the K+12 Enhanced Basic Education Curriculum (phase II) held at the Development Academy of the Philippines, Tagaytay City, and had the very rare opportunity of working together with the great minds in the academic world united in one common objective of setting the stage for the implementation of this flagship education program of the Aquino Administration.

The program really signifies the tenacity and persistence of the new administration in affecting change in the educational landscape of the country to be at par with other countries in terms of international standards. The Department of Education (DepEd) consider it as the administration’s priority program to catch up with the rest of the world having a 12-year basic education cycle in spite of admitted lack of funds and the need to amend the 1982 education law. The DepEd said the 12-year education cycle or the "Kindergarten + 12" program aims to match basic education cycles in most countries in the world, and to produce skilled and "employable" high school graduates.

However, the said program is also under critical scrutiny and debated upon by some from all sides of our society. Some said adding two more years would mean financial burden for parents while others said it will not make any difference in the educational system as it would only disrupt focus of students and therefore rendered useless because it will not after all change anything in the system.

But K+ 12 will necessarily change some things. For one thing, high schools will graduate more mature 18-year-old, instead of 16-year-old, students. An additional two years is also a change that should facilitate coverage of content and mastery of skills: both require time-on-task.

The curriculum will also allow specialization...
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