Private schools give revival of GMRC in Philippine education a ‘big thumbs up’

Published October 27, 2020, 5:05 PM

by Merlina Hernando-Malipot

A group of private schools welcomed the revival of teaching Good Manners and Right Conduct (GMRC) to students and touted this as a “big step” in the country’s education system.

“This is a step in the right direction and, if well implemented, students in the public schools shall be forced to behave well in and out of the campus,” said Federation of Associations of Private Schools Administrators (FAPSA) President Eleazardo Kasilag.

“We all deserve this and it’s a big thumbs up if this is realized in Philippine education,” he added.

For FAPSA Vice President for Program Ray Adalem and FAPSA VP for Administration Sining Kotah, the revival as well as the implementation of GMRC is the “best thing that can ever happen in the public schools.”

On Oct. 23, the Legislative Office of the Department of Education (DepEd) led by Undersecretary Tonisito Umali held a virtual stakeholder’s consultation on the Implementing Rules and Regulations of Republic Act No. 11476 titled “An Act Institutionalizing Good Manners and Right Conduct and Values Education in the K to 12 Curriculum.”

FAPSA, along with other private school groups, attended the said consultation.

Other concerned private or faith-based organizations espousing good values formation were also invited to help formulate a pedagogically-sound GMRC and Values Education curricula for use of students next school year.

During the meeting, Kasilag shared that the subject GMRC is called by different terms in the private schools such as “Character Building,” “Christian Values,” “Christian Ethics,” “Morals,” and “Religion,” among others.

While GMRC is called by many names and might already be incorporated in some subject areas, Kasilag noted that in private schools, the subject is more focused on students’ behavior. “Private schools consider behavior as weightier than academic standing and this is stipulated in the school manual,” he added.

While various agencies have their “own version” and definition of Values, “DepEd wanted inclusivity and universality of the term grounded on ethical and moral principles,” Kasilag shared. 

GMRC shall be taught as a separate subject from Grades 1 to 6, with the same time allotment as other core subjects, and shall be integrated in the daily learning activities in Kindergarten. 

Values Education shall be taught as a separate subject from Grades 7 to 10, with the same time allotment as other core subjects.