Senator Win Gatchalian 

MANILA – Senator Win Gatchalian cited his priority measures that will support the education priorities of the current administration.

In his first State of the Nation Address (SONA) on July 25, Marcos said he is giving a careful review of the K to 12 system.

Gatchalian has filed proposed Senate Resolution No. 5, which seeks a Senate inquiry on the status of the implementation of the Enhanced Basic Education Act of 2013 or the K to 12 Law (Republic Act 10533).

The proposed review seeks to identify strategic solutions to improve the implementation of the law, especially amidst growing dissatisfaction over the K to 12 system.

“Bilang (As) Chairman ng Senate Committee on Basic Education, Arts and Culture, makikipagtulungan tayo sa administrasyon upang tiyaking maihahatid natin sa bawat kabataang Pilipino ang dekalidad na edukasyon (we will cooperate with the administration to make sure that quality education will be given to every young Filipino),” Gatchalian said in a news release on Sunday.

Marcos, in his SONA, said the Philippines should do better in international rankings when it comes to Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) subjects, which has been the call of the lawmaker for years now.

Results of the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMMS) 2019 show that only 13 percent and 19 percent of Grade 4 students in the Philippines meet the minimum benchmark in science and math, respectively.

Considering that teachers are one of the most important factors in education, Gatchalian is seeking the full and proper implementation of the Excellence in Teacher Education Act (Republic Act 11713), which seeks to improve the quality of teacher training and education in the country.

Gatchalian’s Senate Bill 476 or the Equitable Access to Math and Science Education Act seeks to establish accessible math and science high schools across the Philippines, particularly in all provinces that do not have at least one public math and science high school.

Marcos also emphasized children’s need for internet connectivity, computers and educational tools.

To accelerate the digital transformation of the basic education sector, Gatchalian filed Senate Bill 383 or the Digital Transformation in Basic Education Act. He also filed Senate Bill 474 or the One Learner One Laptop Act, which will mandate the Department of Education (DepEd) to provide a laptop for every learner enrolled under the K to 12 program in public schools.

Marcos also asked Congress to reinstitute the Mandatory Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) as a mandatory component of senior high school, which Gatchalian proposed in Gatchalian’s Senate Bill 387. (PR)