MANILA—Some 25 million students in both public and private schools troop back to school on Monday for the historic opening of school year 2016-2017.
This school year sets the wheel in motion for the nationwide rollout of the Senior High School (SHS) program as more than 11,000 schools offering SHS open its doors to an estimated 1.5 million Grade 11 students.
According to the Department of Education (DepEd), 28,844 SHS program offerings spread among 5,990 DepEd public schools nationwide. This is on top of the 28,991 SHS programs also offered by 5,046 private schools, public and private universities and colleges, and technical-vocational institutions nationwide.
In SHS, a student takes 15 core subjects, seven applied track subjects, and nine specialized track subjects.
”What’s important to note here is that these programs offer our incoming senior high school students real choices, consistent with the intention of the K to 12 Program, which is to make education learner-centered, inclusive, competence-based and responsive to the need of the community,” said DepEd Assistant Secretary for Curriculum and Instruction Elvin Uy.
Although there were concerns regarding the low number of enrollment of Grade 11 students, Education Secretary Armin Luistro dispelled the claims, saying that there are at least a million students in Grade 11 that are already enrolled in the schools.
”The enrollment is not low. The submission (of enrollment lists) comes in trickles because this is the first time… (we have) ever done an online enrollment system nationwide that is simultaneous,” Luistro said.
Meanwhile, incoming Education chief Leonor Briones has already expressed support for the K to 12 program, noting that there will be more problems arising from its suspension rather than its continuation.
Briones said the incoming administration will be closely monitoring the implementation of Grade 11 starting June 13 and will be passing on the feedback to the current Education chief.
Both Luistro and Briones will be visiting Commonwealth High School at 11 a.m. on Monday to ensure the smooth opening of classes and witness the historic nationwide implementation of Senior High School.