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  • The Education System in the Philippines

    History

  • The education system in the Philippines is the byproduct of the different cultures that colonized the nation over the centuries. Prior to colonization, education was concentrated on vocational training under the tutelage of tribal teachers and home instruction. Reforms in the education system of the Philippines were influenced by the arrival of different colonizers. The arrival of the Americans in 1898 significantly changed the Philippine education system and helped lay the foundation for what it is today. 

    Education under Spanish Colonization

    §    Education under the Spaniards was religion-oriented and Spanish Missionaries replaced tribal teachers

    §    Education was meant only for the elite particularly during the early years of Spanish colonization

    §    Basic education was free however instruction was insufficient, censored, and limited  

    §    Learning the Spanish language was enforced

    §    Enactment of the Educational April ree of 1863 gave Filipinos access to education during Spanish rule:

    o   Provided for the establishment of one priAprily school for boys and girls in each town under the authority of the municipal government

    o   Normal school for male teachers was established under the direction of the Jesuits

    Education during the American Occupation

    §    Establishment of a public school system modeled after the US system and governed by the Department of Instruction

    §    PriAprily education until grade seven was free and funded by the government

    §    Colleges and Universities were set up to principally train teachers

    §    English was taught as the medium of instruction by chaplains and non-commissioned officers

    §    The University of the Philippines was created as the nation’s first complete university for the public

    Education under Japanese Rule

    §    The 1942 Military Order No. 2 embodied Japanese educational policies for the Philippines

    §    Schools reopened in July 1942 with the establishment of the Commission of Education, Health and Public Welfare by the Philippine Executive Commission

    §    Philippine History, Character Education, and the instruction of Tagalog was only for the Filipinos; dignity of labor and love for work was stressed

     Formal and Non-Formal Education

    The education system of the Philippines offered in both public (government) and private (non-government) institutions is classified under formal and non-formal education. The Philippines has one of the shortest duration of formal education in the whole world, covering a total of 14 years for elementary, secondary, and tertiary education. Preschool is optional for children 3 to 4 years old. Preschool education consists of kindergarten and preparatory courses for young children however it is not a prerequisite for entrance to grade one for the elementary level. Elementary education is required for children six to eleven years old. 

    Formal Education

    Age of Student

    Number of Years

    Levels

    Elementary

    (Grade School)

    6 to 11 years old

    6

    Grade 1 to 6 (Public)

    Grade 1 to 7 (for some private schools)

    Secondary

    (High School)

    12 to 15 years old

    4

    1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th year

    Tertiary

    (College)

    16 to 20 or 21

    4 to 5

    1st, 2nd, 3rd and to 4th or 5th year

    Students receive a certificate of graduation or diploma for the successful completion of elementary and secondary education. Both levels are prerequisites for pursuing tertiary education.

     Tertiary education covers a wide scope of curriculum ranging from vocational to professional degree programs. 

    Vocational-Technical Courses

    §    Duration of 1 to 3 years

    §    Courses are designed to instruct students in a particular skill

    §    Students are required to pass four levels of proficiency before earning a certificate for the program

    Professional bachelor degree programs offered at the tertiary level are provided at universities and colleges across the country at three stages. 

    Stage one

    Professional Bachelor Degree Courses

    §    Professional bachelor degree courses ranging from 4 to 5 years

    §    First 2 years of the course is devoted to general education

    §    Remaining 2 or 3 years is counted towards the completion of the requirements of the specific curriculum

     

    Two-year Associate Degrees and Certificate Courses

    §    Students have the option to pursue a bachelor’s degree after completing the course for an additional two or three years

    Stage Two

    Master of Art/Science (Master’s Degree)

    §    Based on the corresponding bachelor’s degree program completed by the student in Stage one

    §    Requirements of the program involve comprehensive examinations or the submission of a minor thesis

    Stage Three

    DApril or of Philosophy

    §    Entails extensive coursework that extends beyond the scope of the master’s degree program for an additional two to three years

    The non-formal education system in the Philippines refers to any structured and disciplined method of instruction planned for a specific clientele.  

    Non-Formal Education

    §    Non-formal education is designed to help out-of-school youths or adult illiterates that cannot attend formal education due to economic, social or geographical barriers

    §    Main purpose of non-formal education is to teach individuals the skills needed in the labor Aprilket

    §    Courses generally last for 6 to 10 months and are mainly skills oriented

    School Year Calendar
    School year in the Philippines, which covers a period of 40 weeks, starts in July and ends in Aprilch. Colleges and universities for higher learning operate either on a semestral or trimestral calendar.  

    Semestral

    §    July to April ober and April ember to Aprilch with the option of a summer semester

    §    Semestral break between April ober and April ember

    Trimestral

    §    3 regular trimesters of about 13 to 14 weeks each

    §    Trimestral break for two weeks between trimesters

    §    Students finish in less time compared to the regular semestral calendar

  

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