DepEd reiterates commitment to address challenges of quality in basic education

Published December 2, 2020, 1:08 PM

by Merlina Hernando-Malipot

The Department of Education (DepEd) on Wednesday reiterated its commitment to ensure that challenges when it comes to the quality of basic education will be addressed amidst the changes that affect the landscape of education.


“Together with our partners, and with a data-driven policy approach, we will carry on and confront the challenges of quality in basic education so that our learners and teachers will have the tools to conquer this brave new world,” DepEd said in a statement following the release of the Regional Report of the Southeast Asia Primary Learning Metrics 2019 (SEA-PLM 2019).

The SEA-PLM 2019 was developed to assist countries across Southeast Asia to “better measure and understand learning outcomes” in Reading, Writing, Mathematics, and Global Citizenship of Grade 5 learners.

Based on the key findings of the study, the SEA-PLM 2019 showed that when it comes to Reading, a “small to modest percentage” of Grade 5 children in the Philippines were “above or were progressing” towards achieving the expected levels of reading proficiency at the end of primary education.

In Writing, the study noted that the Philippines has a “very limited number” of Grade 5 children achieved higher levels of proficiency in writing.

The said study also noted that when it comes to Mathematics, the Philippines has “modest percentages” of Grade 5 children who have achieved the mathematical literacy skills expected at the end of primary school.

Meanwhile, DepEd welcomed the release of SEA-PLM 2019 which is implemented in six participating Southeast Asian countries within the months of School Year 2018-2019.

“Our participation in the first-ever cycle of SEA-PLM signifies our continued commitment to raising the quality of basic education in the country,” the agency said.

The results SEA-PLM 2019, DepEd noted, complements the Programme for International Students Assessment (PISA) 2018 findings which revealed “dismal” performance of 15-year-old students in Mathematics, Science, and Reading.

DepEd noted that the findings of the SEA-PLM 2019 and the PISA 2018 will be integrated into its “broader efforts to address curriculum and learning gaps.” Using the insights from these assessments, DepEd said that it will “decisively study and evaluate our short, medium, and long-term interventions to further raise the literacy and numeracy skills of our learners while supporting our teachers.”

Since the release of the PISA results, DepEd said that it has made progress in its campaign for quality education.

“Our efforts on curriculum review, teachers’ professional development, and learning environment improvement are continuously moving forward despite the disruptions brought by the COVID-19 pandemic,” it added.

DepEd is also grateful to its international and local partner organizations which reinforced its “Sulong EduKalidad” initiative and its four pillars of aggressive reforms (KITE).

“We are determined to translate these international assessments into concrete and implementable actions, especially in the classroom where actual learning takes place,” the department added.

The SEA-PLM was joined by six participating countries including Cambodia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines and Vietnam.

Among the recommendations cited in the study include the need for the participating countries to “prioritize early learning in disadvantaged contexts” and “guarantee a solid start in primary education through on-time enrolment and progression for all children, especially the disadvantaged.”

The study is also urging countries to “ensure explicit and progressive learning standards in the curriculum of basic education, including in digital and blended learning options” and support motivated and experienced teachers with conducive teaching and positive school environments.