PNoy to finally sign ‘K-12’ law

K+12 Basic Education Program

President Aquino is expected to sign into law on Wednesday the Enhanced Basic Education Act of 2013 that officially mandates Kindergarten and a 12-year basic education curriculum in the country at par with international standards, Education Secretary Armin Luistro announced Tuesday.

The President will sign what is otherwise known as the “K to 12” (Kindergarten to Grade 12) law three months since the bill mandating this educational reform was passed by Congress, said Luistro as he faced reporters at the end of DepEd’s election monitoring.

The Senate and the House of Representatives reconciled its respective versions and approved the bicameral version of the K to 12 bill during its session on February 6, just before it went on recess to give way to the election campaign.

But despite being a priority measure, the K to 12 bill was not immediately signed into law.

Insiders in the Department of Education (DepEd) said Malacañang returned the law to Congress supposedly to correct errors in the wording.

The law formalizes the addition of two years to the previous 10-year basic education curriculum. It also integrates a law passed in 2011 that made Kindergarten also mandatory in public schools.

The new 12-year basic education curriculum comprises six years of elementary (Grade 1 to 6), four years of junior high school (Grade 7 to 10) and two additional years of senior high school (Grade 11 and Grade 12).

Senior high school will be implemented nationwide in 2016.

Even without the K to 12 law, the DepEd last year already piloted Grade 11 in 30 public and private schools as it began to overhaul the elementary and high school curriculum.

The K to 12 law also authorizes DepEd to hire college faculty members, professional practitioners and other noneducation graduates to teach in high school, lifting a 1994 rule that requires only licensed teachers to teach in elementary and high school.

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