First, I'd like to thank whoever were responsible for voting my blog as pinoyblog of the week and the person who did the wonderful write-up that accompanied it. Thanks, too, to Doc Emer who congratulated me first and from whom I learned about it and the succeeding congratulations I got from my friends. Now, on to blogging.
Side by side in today's Opinion page of the SIM are two alarming stories on the plight of education in the country. In some ways, it can be viewed as the cause and the aftermath. Isagani Cruz in his article The pathetic record of our public schools has reason to be appalled by the report that from among the high school seniors who took the National Achievement Test, only 13% got a score of 75% and above. Now that is appalling for our generation seems to be failing to do our share in securing not only a bright future but our sheer existence in this planet as a people who can govern ourselves.
The editorials' column,Flaws on the other hand gives us that part of the reason can be attributed to none other than the DepEd itself. Textbooks used in public schools contain glaring errors. Sassy had enumerated some of these glaring errors here.
While the article does not leave the blame alone on the DepEd, I would put most of the blame on the department. Just like in my school where a committee is formed to review the textbooks that we require our students to buy, I would assume there is such a thing in the department. For after all, it is accountable to the entire learning population in the public schools. They were tasked to safeguard the quality of the educational system and much to my regret, they failed miserably. I don't know how true this is but I have heard that the department is one, of if not the most corrupt department in the country today. Allegedly, publishers have their agents queued for long hours in the Department just to get their books approved. And they stash huge amounts just so they get the approval. And why not? If approved, they will be assured of millions of sales. Well, unconfirmed but it may be true. With the quality of the books used, and the glaring errors that surfaced to date, one might wonder how these books passed the screening, rigid or not.
Of course, teachers should be held accountable as well. Even if there were errors in the books, a good teacher could have spotted it right away and should have made the correction when passing the information to their students. True, but the problem here is, will the students believe the teacher right away? For after all, the book says otherwise. Remember, these students do not have access to many resources than their counterparts in the private schools. And worse, will they have time to check out the sources? While a part of them are more concerned about helping the family eke an additional income,a bigger percentage of them are probably daydreaming about how rich they would have been if they could be like their idols on tv. Something Cruz attributes to the deteriorating quality of our students. Who are these idols on tv? Screaming faggots, singers, actors and actresses cum politicians. Too bad, education could have bridged the gap between the haves and have nots. But with this development, the gap becomes farther and farther away. Truly, the future remains bleak.
If we had been Dianne Reeve's point of reference, she would not have been singing "Better Days" but "Darker Days" instead.