The Department of Education (DepEd) on Monday assured the accuracy of its national enrollment data from the basic education level in private and public schools for School Year (SY) 2020-2021.
During the virtual “Handang Isip, Handa Bukas” press briefing, DepEd Undersecretary for Planning Jesus Mateo vouched for the credibility of DepEd’s enrollment data since these come directly from concerned regional offices (ROs) and schools division offices (SDOs) nationwide.
“This is accurate because this came from our field offices,” Mateo, “Oplan: Balik Eskwela” (OBE) chairman for SY 2020-2021, said. The OBE is an annual back-to-school initiative of DepEd to ensure that issues and concerns raised on school opening are addressed.
Coordinating Council of Private Educational Associations (COCOPEA) Managing Director Atty. Joseph Noel Estrada had earlier asked DepEd to clarify its enrollment data, especially concerning students who transferred from private to public schools this school year.
Based on DepEd latest data, there are almost 400,000 basic education students transferring from private schools to the public schools. Estrada said that this is not a “negligible number.”
“This is already 20 percent of the current enrollment in the private schools, and that's huge considering that enrollment is down by 50 percent,” Estrada said.
Estrada noted that the claim of DepEd that it has already achieved almost 100 percent of last year’s enrollment with the current number of enrollees in public schools may not be accurate.
DepEd said that there are 22.46 million students enrolled in public schools nationwide as of Sept. 28, 99.50 percent of the SY 2019-2020 enrollment recorded at 22.5 million.
However, Estrada said that it may not be accurate to state that 99 percent have enrolled in the public schools from last year’s data if “we are saying 400,000 of those came from private schools.”
This, he said, means that “there are public school students that dropped out and unaccounted for.”