(File photo)

MANILA – The Private Sector Advisory Council (PSAC) on Wednesday expressed support for the Department of Education's (DepEd) plan to revise the Kinder to Grade 12 (K to 12) curriculum to produce "job-ready, active and responsible" graduates.

The commitment was made, two days after Vice President Sara Duterte, who also serves as DepEd Secretary, launched the "MATATAG" agenda, which would serve as the department's roadmap in addressing challenges in basic education.

In a statement, PSAC Job Sector lead Joey Concepcion said the private sector is giving its full support for the DepEd's "comprehensive" reforms to address systemic challenges in several aspects of the education sector.

“Under the leadership of Vice President and Secretary of Education Sara Duterte, PSAC fully supports their efforts and comprehensive plans for improving the Philippine basic education system," said Concepcion, founder of GO Negosyo and president and chief executive officer of RFM Corp..

“We believe that it will bring about positive change for students, educators and the country as a whole,” he added.

Concepcion also ensured that the PSAC is ready to work with the government to improve the country's basic education system.

“PSAC is committed to working with the government and other partners to help achieve the goals DepEd has set out and to contribute to the development of a well-educated and skilled workforce,” he said.

During the presentation of the Basic Education Report (BER) 2023 at Sofitel Hotel in Pasay City on Monday, Duterte identified the problems hounding various areas in the basic education sector, including curriculum, infrastructure, learners' well-being and teachers' welfare.

She also launched the "MATATAG" agenda, which stands for a four-side holisitc approach to basic education improvement.

Based on Duterte's presentation, "MATATAG" means "MAke the curriculum relevant to produce job-ready, active, and responsible citizens; TAke steps to accelerate the delivery of basic education services and provision facilities; TAke good care of learners by promoting learner well-being, inclusiveness learning, and positive learning environment; and Give support for teachers to teach better."

Duterte also sought partnership with the Commission on Higher Education (CHED), the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) and various industry partners to address the issue of skills mismatch in senior high school program.

Marcos, who graced the DepEd event, said the national government must confront issues hounding the education sector with an “open mind and compassion.”

On Dec. 9, 2022, the PSAC Jobs Sector met with President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr., Duterte and other relevant government officials to discuss concrete plans to create more and better jobs for Filipinos.

One of the PSAC proposals made during the Dec. 9 meeting was to build skills and capabilities that would allow longer-term competitiveness. The recommendation was reflected in the first factor of DepEd’s MATATAG agenda.

PSAC Jobs Sector also recommended identifying specific skills for long-term competitiveness and revamping basic and higher education and workforce development to drive productivity and encourage entrepreneurship.

The specific skills identified during the recent meeting were English proficiency; science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) related skills; and digital readiness.

The council also proposed that the DepEd, CHED and TESDA further integrate and work with the private sector to set standards, update curricula and design training programs that match the real skill needs of priority sectors. (PNA)