Mandatory teaching of Ethics in school pushed

Published October 7, 2019, 4:19 PM

by Francine Ciasico

By Charissa Luci-Atienza 

Citing the need to strengthen the ethics and values of citizens through educational system, a leader of the House of Representatives has filed a bill mandating all colleges and universities to provide three-unit Ethics course for every profession, and making Ethics as a compulsory separate course in elementary and secondary education.


Under House Bill 4681 or the proposed “Compulsory Teaching of Ethics Act,” Batangas Rep. Mario Vittorio “Marvey” Mariño, chairman of the House Committee on Government Reorganization, seeks the mandatory teaching of Ethics at all levels of elementary education, bridge program, secondary education and in all degree programs offered by colleges and universities.

“Schools are obliged to guarantee knowledgeable individuals of good character especially in an environment where not only is corruption a major problem, but also one which is embedded in our culture. It is for this reason that reforms, like the adoption of programs for values education and anti-corruption modules for elementary and high school students, in our educational system were introduced. As time went by, however, these reforms were considered ineffectual, ” Mariño said.

HB 4681 calls for an Ethics and Values Formation syllabus which include the following levels of public morality: Basic Honesty and Conformity to Law; Conflict of Interest, Service Orientation and Procedural Fairness, Ethics of Public Policy Determination; and Ethics of Compromise and Social Integration.

“The curriculum should have additional topics and studies on the cases, issue and effects of graft and corruption in the Philippines and in other parts of the world, and suggested measures to reform a corrupt environment,” Mariño said.

“Other areas of Ethics and Values formation may be included in the syllabus, provided that it will not be made in preference of any religion or belief,” he added.

HB 4681requires all colleges and universities to provide a compulsory three-unit Ethics course for every profession–Legal Ethics for law schools, Medical Ethics for medical schools, and Military Ethics for the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) and other military schools.

The measure authorizes and directs the Secretary of Education and the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) Commissioners to adopt a system to implement and carry out the provisions of the proposed Act.