By Vanne Elaine Terrazola
Senate Majority Leader Juan Miguel Zubiri has proposed the revival of a subject on good manners and right conduct (GMRC) for all levels in elementary and high school.
Zubiri on Friday said he has filed Senate Bill No. 310 or the proposed GMRC Act which seeks to institutionalize GMRC education in the curriculum of the K to 12 program.
While the Department of Education said values education is already incorporated in the current elementary and secondary school curriculum, the Senate leader lamented the lack of discipline among the youth and their involvement in crimes.
“I observe that this seeming downgrading of Vlaues Education in the curriculum has made it harder to raise upright citizens. So, we see rising criminality in the streets and inside our homes committed by youngsters and adults who have not undergone GMRC as we had in the old days,” Zubiri said in his statement.
“We witness this low level of discipline in disrespectful behavior of children and teens who are most vulnerable to the use of drugs and oftentimes resort to gangsterism,” he said.
Another effect of the lack in GMRC education, he said, was “children and teens who haven’t been taught well in values don’t know how to assert their rights against abusive peers and adults, even abusive parents.”
They will benefit from GMRC “very much”, Zubiri added.
In stressing its benefit, the senator cited the practice of discipline and respect in Singapore and Japan.
“We can see how it is effective in their own countries and as a matter of fact praised and emulated by many people across the world,” he said.
Zubiri said it would also not cost the government much if GMRC would be incorporated into the curricula of public and private schools.
“Adding another subject and additional time in school for GMRC is a wise investment that the government must make,” he added.
In an interview over radio DZBB recently, DepEd Secretary Leonor Briones welcomed the revival of the GMRC subject in schools.