The Department of Education (DepEd) has reported that 42 percent of students in Central Luzon did not enroll for the additional Grade 11 classes that the K-12 requires.
For this reason, the agency extended the enrollment period for Grade 11 until June 30. This year marks the first batch of Grade 11 students since the K-12 program started five years ago under outgoing President Benigno Aquino III’s administration.
“I am appealing to parents to believe in the K-12 program,” DepEd Central Luzon director Malcolm Garma said on Tuesday.
The department believes that one of the main reasons why only 58 percent enrolled for Grade 11 is due to the persistent rumors that President-elect Rodrigo Duterte is planning to stop the implementation of the K-12 education program.
However, Duterte has already said that he has already changed his mind about the K-12 program and now sees the value in it.
“I said I was against it early on when it was being implemented. But some of the bright guys in DepEd (Department of Education) came to see me here in Davao and explained to me how we are lagging behind our neighbors,” Duterte said in an earlier interview.
The president-elect has also reassured the public that incoming DepEd Secretary Leonor Briones will continue the implementation of the education program.
The low enrollment rate for Grade 11 students in the region could also be due to the parents’ opposition to the K-12 program due to the perceived additional financial costs for their family.
However, the K-12 program is supposed to be free for public school students except for some indirect and miscellaneous fees.
The additional two years of education for students prior to going to college under the K-12 program aims to provide students with the opportunity to specialize in various fields based on their skills and interests.
RELATED: Briones outlines changes in DepEd