Deped welcomes House’s plan to review K-12 program

Aileen Cerrudo   •   October 22, 2019   •   250

The Department of Education (Deped) welcomes the plan of the House of Representatives to review the K to 12 basic education program.

In a statement, Deped said the department is willing to coordinate with the members of Congress to plan a more effective implementation of the said program.

“DepEd hopes the outcome of the review will spur renewed commitment and initiatives among lawmakers, advocates, and other stakeholders in aid of realizing the K to 12 program’s overall goal – hone holistically developed Filipino learners with 21st century skills,” Deped said in a statement.

On Sunday (October 20), House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano said that the Lower House is in consensus that the K to 12 Program has to be reviewed.

“We in the House are of the consensus that K-12 is not living up to its promise, which is, after you finish senior high school, you don’t have to go to college. You gain skills to be employed,” he said.

Cayetano said there are still issues needed to be addressed including the lack of equipment of several schools to fully implement the said program.

The education department said they will work closely with Congress to address the issues of the K to 12 Program.

“A dedicated review session will provide an appropriate venue to comprehensively discuss concerns about the program and plot out corresponding solutions,” their statement reads.—AAC

House adopts resolution granting additional incentives to SEA Games medalists

Aileen Cerrudo   •   December 5, 2019

The House of Representatives (HOR) has adopted a resolution that will push for additional incentives for Southeast Asian (SEA) Games medalists.

On Wednesday (December 4), The House adopted House Resolution No. 568 which grants SEA Games medalists additional incentives from the leaders and members of the House in the 18th Congress.

“As a concrete manifestation of the commonality of the goal to bring honor and pride to the country, the leaders and members of the House of Representatives deem it proper to deduct individual pledges from their salaries from January 2020, as additional incentives to Filipino gold medal winners in the 30th SEA Games,” the resolution states.

The resolution also states that the “House stands in solidarity with Team Philippines throughout the competition in their quest to capture the gold medals in their respective sports, and to bring honor and pride to the Filipino people.”

President Rodrigo Duterte had previously said he is willing to provide additional incentives to Filipino athletes who will bag medals in the SEA Games.

As of December 5, at 9:30 a.m., the Philippines has collected a total of 119 medals with 56 gold, 41 silver, and 22 bronze. The SEA Games will continue until December 11.—AAC

Gatchalian calls for stricter monitoring in schools after reports of illegal drug alternatives

Aileen Cerrudo   •   December 2, 2019

Chairman of the Senate Committee on Basic Education, Arts and Culture Senator Sherwin ‘Win’ Gatchalian has called for stricter monitoring in schools after reports of students allegedly using illegal drug alternatives such as “magic mushroom”.

In a statement, Gatchalian said that it is alarming to hear reports about high school students using psychedelic mushrooms or ‘magic mushrooms’ commonly found in rural areas as a form of illegal drugs substitute.

Department of Education (Deped) Secretary Leonor Briones said that several high school students were hospitalized after using the said illegal drug substitute.

Gatchalian also said that this incident needs to be investigated further in order to come up with a solution for the safety of the students in the country.

“Marami rin tayong dapat malaman. Gaano na karami ang naiulat na ganitong uri ng insidente? Paano natuklasan ito ng mga mag-aaral? Saan ito laganap? At ano-ano ang naging mga epekto nito sa ating mag-aaral? (We also have a lot to be learned. How many similar incidents were reported? How did students discover it [magic mushrooms]? Where is it rampant? What are its effects on our students?), ” he said.—AAC

Department of Disaster Resilience Bill passes House committee level

Robie de Guzman   •   November 21, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – A bill seeking to create a Department of Disaster Resilience (DDR) has been approved at the committee level of the House of Representatives.

The House committees on government reorganization and disaster management approved on Wednesday the still unnumbered bill that would create an agency to handle disaster management.

It can be recalled that President Rodrigo Duterte, during his fourth State of the Nation Address, called on Congress to pass measures creating new agencies, including the DDR.

The measure provides for the creation of the DDR, which shall serve as the primary government agency responsible for leading, organizing and managing the national effort to reduce disaster risk, prepare for and respond to disasters, recover and rehabilitate, and build forward better after the occurrence of disasters.

The department will also oversee and coordinate the preparation, implementation, monitoring, and evaluation of disaster and climate resilience plans, programs, projects, and activities; and provide leadership in the continuous development of strategic and systematic approaches to disaster prevention, mitigation, preparedness, response, recovery, and rehabilitation.

The agency will be headed by a secretary, supported by four undersecretaries responsible for the following key result areas: disaster risk reduction, disaster preparedness and response, recovery and building forward better, and support to operations.

According to Albay Second District Representative Joey Salceda, one of the main proponents of the bill, the new department would need an initial budget of P10 billion from the national budget.

The measure also states that the DDR shall have a Disaster Resilience Fund, which shall consist of the Annual General Appropriations, the Disaster Contingency Fund, and the Rehabilitation and Recovery Fund to properly implement its provisions.

After hurdling the committee level, the measure will be referred to the House Committee on Rules for the schedule of its plenary deliberation.

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