Lower House may again seek passing marks to K-12 students for SY 2021-22

Published October 21, 2021, 4:12 PM

by Ben Rosario

Barely a month after its adoption in the House of Representatives, the resolution calling on the Department of Education to give an automatic passing mark to students will have to be taken up again in the legislative chamber.

San Jose del Monte City Rep. Rida Robes

San Jose del Monte City Rep. Rida Robes aired this proposal as she urged educators to heed the Lower House appeal for academic leniency on K to 12 basic education program students who have been denied face-to-face classroom studies due to the public health threat of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Robes said most students, especially those who are not qualified to get COVID-19 vaccines, will likely have to continue studying at home until the next school year which is 2021-22.

She said the Lower House should act again for adoption of a measure that is similar to House Resolution No. 2267 that was passed by the chamber last September.

HR 2267 consolidated two legislative proposals seeking to protect the mental health of K-12 students by giving them passing marks for the school year 2020-21.

Authors of the measure are Bukidnon Reps. Manuel F. Zubiri and Ma. Lourdes Acosta-Alba who jointly filed House Bill 7961; and Nueva Ecija 2nd District Rep. Micaela S. Violago.

Robes, a co-author of HR 2267, explained that since application of the measure is limited only to the 2020-21 school year, a similar measure should also be filed to cover the current school year, 2021-22.

“Our children will be under the same condition as last school year,” said Robes, chairperson of the House Committee on People Participation.

“They are under extreme stress right now because of the online classes and restrictions on their mobility. We should make sure that the pressure of passing or failing doesn’t add to that stress,” she explained.

In HR 2267, the Lower House called on DepEd to “exercise scholastic leniency to students” of the K to 12 basic education program enrolled during the school year 2020-21.

Congressmen asked DepEd to give the students “an automatic passing mark”, stressing that this is one way of “protecting their health and well-being in the light of the abrupt changes in education services delivery that had to be undertaken during the COVID 19 pandemic and of the series of calamities they had to bear in 2020.”

They noted that the online classes that students observed have “ presented teachers and students with new sources of stress due to lack of proper devices, unstable internet connection, poor audio and other technical glitches.”

Exacerbating the COVID-19-affected condition of learning were the series of natural calamities that took place from 2020 to 2021.