STATEMENT: In an interview in Mati, Davao Oriental on March 2, vice presidential candidate Francis “Chiz” Escudero said the Philippines is one of the remaining five countries in the world without a K to12 Education System.
Asked about educational reforms the country needs, he said, “Isa na lamang sa limang bansa sa mundo ang Pilipinas na sampung taon ang elementary at high school. Dapat sumabay tayo’t maging 12 taon na ‘yan. Subalit kung hindi pa tayo handa, ‘di ‘wag natin pilitin ngayong taong ito.”
(Source: Chiz Escudero’s website)
FACT: Republic Act 10533 enacted in 2013 legislated the K to 12 curriculum. Basic education in the Philippines now consists of kindergarten, six years of elementary education, four years of junior high school and two years of senior high. Senior high school will be offered nationwide in June this year. When fully implemented, the country will have 13 years of basic education.
Before the law was passed, the Philippines was one of the three remaining countries in the world—not five as Escudero said—and the only one in Asia with a 10-year pre-university education system. The other countries are Djibouti and Angola, both in Africa.
—Bei Zamora and Jobelle Adan
(The contributors are University of the Philippines journalism majors who are fact-checking candidates for their Journalism Ethics [J110] course taught by VERA Files trustee Yvonne T. Chua.)