“Now is the best time to teach honesty.”
This is what the officials of the Department of Education (DepEd) told parents as they guide and monitor their children under the distance learning implemented this school year.
Education Secretary Leonor Briones, during this week’s “Handang Isip, Handa Bukas” virtual press briefing said that there are certain adjustments that need to be made as students undergo home-based learning.
Following the viral photos of parents seemingly doing the assignments on behalf of their children, Briones said it is part of the responsibility of the adults to ensure that the children not only learn their lessons but also the values such as honesty – among others.
“Sinasabi natin na ang pagturo ng honesty ay mas mahalaga (We’ve been saying that teaching honesty is far more important),” Briones said. The grades of the students this year, she explained, will no longer be based on examination but on submitted projects and portfolios.
Briones noted that adults doing the children’s school work has always been a “societal issue” because it is practiced by some families for decades already. “It would really help if we teach honesty and we give emphasis that the child will not gain anything if someone else will do his or her work – it doesn’t benefit the child at all,” she added.
The practice of parents and other members of the family doing the child’s homework, Briones said, has also been a “challenge” not only for DepEd but for the entire education system.
Given this, Briones urged parents to veer away from this practice. “You can tutor them but you cannot answer the workbook yourselves,” she said.
Briones also reminded parents that the teachers of their children will find out who did the homework. “As a teacher myself, I can say that teachers have their way of knowing if the homework was completed by the child or by the grown up,” she explained. “The patterns of sentences, the way arguments and interpretation were made – these give hints to the teachers and they call the attention of the family,” she added.
Meanwhile, DepEd Undersecretary for Curriculum and Instruction Diosdado San Antonio also appealed to parents and other adults to refrain from doing the children’s homework.
“We’ve been asking the parents not to do this and we also remind them that this is the perfect opportunity to teach their children about honesty,” San Antonio said. “Our teachers are also trained to detect the ones completed by the child or the adult,” he added.