The Enhanced Basic Education Act of 2013 otherwise known as RA 10533 was approved in May this year (2013), and took effect in June, just right in time for the opening of the new school year. This law sanctioned the K-12 curricular reform in basic education, including the landmark adoption of Mother Tongue Based-Multilingual Education (MTB-MLE).
I’ll be poring through its implemeneting rules and regulations (IRR) today and posting notable sections as I go. First off, let’s start with the conceptual definition of Basic Education:
This concept, actualized, looks like this in an enhanced basic education program:
More than the years added to basic education, here’s what really enhances it:
These are all good. Now here’s the summary for curriculum formulation and design:
This is one of the aspects of the reform move that has received a lot of flak due to its focus on tech-voc and work orientation. Others would argue that there is more to education than making workers out of learners, especially workers shipped as labor export in foreign lands. I have my own thoughts on the debate, but this would be better discussed in length elsewhere.
Little discussed in this framework outside of education practitioners is that word “harmonized”, and I wanted to highlight it. This is no mean feat for curriculum writers to design, and for teachers to implement on the ground. Integrative education has by far escaped us, and this deficit in basic education is magnified in the tertiary level where colleges shun collaboration and any influence in whatever form from other disciplines. So they stand in isolation within their narrow theory and practice. It is my hope that if basic education gets this aspect right, we’d have graduated high school students capable of integration. If more of us were of this bent toward synthesis, we’d have solutions to problems that were more layered, and likely more effective.
Here are curricular principles: