For the Department of Education (DepEd), achieving a higher enrollment turnout is the “best news” so far as it formally opened the School Year (SY) 2021-2022 this week.
“Nakakatuwa at masayang-masaya kami sa Department of Education dahil sa taong ito, nakita namin na mas marami ang challenges na hinaharap natin sa departamento, kasi nandoon na iyong ibang variant na lumalabas pero, ang magandang balita ay nalampasan natin ang enrollment last year (We, at the Department of Education, are excited and very happy because this year, we saw that there are more challenges that we face in the department because of the other variants that are coming out but the good news is that we surpassed the enrollment last year),” said Education Secretary Leonor Briones in a public briefing on Sept. 17.
Amidst the ongoing coronavirus situation (COVID-19) in the country, DepEd opened a new school year on Sept. 13. “So, even with changed conditions, more challenges, we surpassed the enrollment last year,” Briones said.
Based on DepEd’s Learner Information System (LIS) Quick Count as of Sept. 17, there are 27,583,701 students enrolled in this SY which is 105.2 percent of the enrollment in SY 2020-2021 recorded at 26.2 million. “Ito ay napakagandang balita (This is very good news),” she added.
“Right now, for this week, tuwang-tuwa kami talaga dahil nalampasan natin ang (we are really happy, because we surpassed the) numbers last year,” Briones said. “Mas maraming challenges, pero mas maraming mga bata ang nag-enroll (There are more challenges but more children were able to enroll),” she explained.
Meanwhile, Briones said that the school opening was a success because of the preparations made by the agency.
“We’re asked, what’s the secret, how did we prepare, well, first, we told the truth,” Briones said in a mix of English and Filipino. In particular, she noted that DepEd gave out all the information that was available on school opening preparations.
Briones also highlighted how the Filipino culture played a crucial role in the opening of classes. “The parents consider education as very important and crucial for the lives of their children,” she added.
The higher enrollment turnout this school year, Briones said, also showed the “trust” given by the public and the citizens to DepEd. “In spite of all the threats and all the noise, the parents still sent their children under our care,” she added.
Briones also cited the efforts at economic recovery which helped increase the enrollment.
“Ito lahat, magagandang mga bagay na nag-contribute sa ating increase in enrollment this year at tayong lahat ay tuwang-tuwa talaga (These are all good things that have contributed to our increase in enrollment this year and we are all really happy),” she added.