Two salient features of the K-12 Program in the Philippines are Spiral Progression, to ensure that what is learned at one stage will not only be carried onto the other but also strengthened and developed over time, and College and Livelihood Readiness, to equip the Filipino student with the skills necessary to be a productive member of the society in the 21st Century. It is only imperative therefore that all curricula under this program gear toward these objectives. Values Education, being one of the subjects, has a vital role to play in this endeavor. Hence the necessity of formulating a curriculum fit for such a Values Education. Last year a draft for the Values Education curriculum entitled Gabay sa Kurikulum ng K to 12: Edukasyon sa Pagpapakatao has been created.
This paper aims to challenge the said January 2013 draft, expose the adulterated contents of the curriculum and the adverse effects it holds once implemented, and give recommendations to what can be done to address the problem. After having conducted a survey which involves 20 EDFD 120 students of the University of the Philippines – Diliman, the researcher will reveal the reasons why completely scrapping the undeserving curriculum is justifiable and is in fact the best option. The results reveal that the curriculum is a contrast of itself. To conclude, the curriculum is but a hodgepodge of ideas adhering not only to one but several philosophies, without an established objective nor a definite method to achieve such an objective. Implementation of Gabay sa Kurikulum ng K to 12: Edukasyon sa Pagpapakatao spells chaos to the educational system of the Philippines. It is thus necessary that the curriculum be scrapped and replaced immediately.
THE RESEARCH PROBLEM AND ITS SETTING
On June 2011, the K-12 program was implemented in the Philippines with one of its aims being to equip the Filipino students 21st Century skills for their holistic development as an individual which is in effect their contribution to the development of the Filipino nation. A year after, on June 2012, a new curriculum for Grade 1 and 1st year high school (Grade 7) was introduced. Strengthening the Philippine economy through ensuring that Filipino students maximize their potentials is all but just one of the objectives of the K-12 Program nevertheless. It is also concerned of the Filipino youth being imbued “with the skills they need to pursue their dreams,” as President Aquino stated in Republic Act No. 10533. The objective of the program thus is not solely to produce individuals who will be valuable members of the country’s workforce, but to assist its youth in their pursuing of their own goals.
The youth then has to possess the values which an education that gears its efforts toward alleviating the worsening economic status of the state and the moral degradation of its people necessitates. This is the role of Values Education, whose curriculum has been created on January 2013. The attempt of this study is to expose the errors committed in and the faulty contents of the said Values Education curriculum entitled Gabay sa Kurikulum ng K to 12: Edukasyon sa Pagpapakatao. This paper also aims to examine the philosophies of education that may have been used in the drafting of the curriculum.
Statement of the Problem
This study will determine the philosophies of education playing a significant role in establishing the objectives of the Values Education curriculum. It attempts to provide answers for the following questions: 1. To what extent are the following philosophies prevalent or not prevalent in the curriculum? a) Essentialism and Perennialism
b) Progressivism and Social Reconstructionism
c) Analytic Philosophy
2. Which philosophy/philosophies of education is/are the most prevalent?
3. Which philosophy/philosophies of education is/are the least prevalent?
RESEARCH METHODS AND PROCEDURES
The purpose of this study is to determine to what extent do specified philosophies of education prevail in the January 2013 draft of Gabay sa Kurikulum ng K to 12: Edukasyon sa Pagpapakatao. This chapter includes the sampling procedure, research instrument, and data analysis. Sampling Procedure
A five-page questionnaire in English was posted as Word files in the Facebook group 1 EDFD120 2nd1314 which consists of 23 members on Tuesday, January 28, 2014 by the professor of the class, Dr. Michael Arthus Muega. Criteria
Respondents were chosen on the basis of the following criteria: 1. Respondents should be undergraduate students of the University of the Philippines – Diliman currently enrolled in the course EDFD 120: Philosophies of Education. 2. Twenty respondents should be surveyed.
3. Respondents should be knowledgeable about the different philosophies of education. 4. Respondents should be required to participate in the survey. Twenty (20) respondents, all members of the aforementioned Facebook group, answered the survey by downloading the files online. These files were answered, printed, photocopied, and submitted to all the students in the class. Only 16 of the respondents submitted their accomplished questionnaires on Tuesday, February 4, 2014 – the deadline. The remaining four (4) submitted theirs by posting them as Word files in the same Facebook group and by distributing the hard copies to the class on a later date. Research Instrument
Questionnaires were used as the research instrument of the study. The class was divided into six groups a few weeks after the start of the class on October 2013. Each of these groups, consisting of 4-6 members, were assigned their philosophies to research on and report to the class later during the semester while the professor of the class prepared the questionnaire. On January 2014, the members of each group added to, modified, and removed some of, the questions under their assigned philosophy – questions that were included by their professor in the initial questionnaire.
Although this was preferred, the students who researched and reported about a different philosophy were allowed to do the same. The questionnaire was edited by their professor and the whole class reached a consensus to use the final questionnaire. The research instrument contains questions about the respondents’ personal information and 20 statements – five (5) under each philosophy. The respondents will only have to fill out the personal information being asked of them, indicate whether they strongly disagree, disagree, are undecided, agree, or strongly agree with each statement, and prove their answers by expounding and citing an example from the curriculum. Although the questionnaire is suited for both quantitative and qualitative research, the study will strictly be quantitative.
In order to satisfy a quantitative research, the researcher has been required to analyze the data from the questionnaires answered by the current EDFD 120 students of the University of the Philippines – Diliman. These students have been surveyed due to their experience and understanding of the philosophies of education and of the Gabay sa Kurikulum ng K to 12: Edukasyon sa Pagpapakatao. Data Analysis
The collated data were tabulated and analyzed. Tables and figures based on these data will be used to present the results of the survey with more clarity.
PRESENTATION, ANALYSES, AND INTERPRETATION OF DATA
In this chapter the results of the survey will be presented. Following the presentation will be the processing, analysis, and interpretation of the gathered data. This section specifically provides the answer to which philosophies are the most and the least prevalent in Gabay sa Kurikulum ng K to 12: Edukasyon sa Pagpapakatao. It must be noted that each statement speaks of the qualities which define the philosophy the statement is under. Therefore, agreeing to the statement is agreeing that the curriculum has the chief quality of the philosophy and disagreeing to it is disagreeing that the curriculum possesses such philosophy’s quality.
1. Answers of Respondents to the Statements under Essentialism and Perennialism Table 1. Answers of Respondents to the Statements under Essentialism and Perennialism
Figure 1. Answers of Respondents to the Statements under Essentialism and Perennialism
Table 1 and Figure 1 show that 10 respondents or 50% disagree and six (6) or 30% strongly disagree with the first statement; eight (8) or 40% disagree and seven (7) or 35% strongly disagree with the second statement; eight (8) or 40% strongly disagree and another eight (8) or 40% disagree with the third statement; 10 or 50% disagree and seven (7) or 35% strongly disagree with the fourth statement; and 13 or 65% strongly disagree with the fifth statement. It is clear that 80% of the respondents (strongly) disagree with the supposition that Essentialism and Perennialism are the dominant philosophies in the January 2013 draft of the curriculum and less than a quarter percent supposes they are. Although some of the perennial skills like those of highly effective communication are specified in the curriculum guide, with “kakayahang makipagtalastasan” even being the first of the five life skills under the conceptual framework of EsP (pp. 2-3), in the first statement the majority of the respondents disagree because the curriculum guide does not provide any clear instruction as to how students may be equipped with these skills.
In addition to this, the relevance of some values to the general aim of developing skills for precise, logical, and systematic problem solving is questionable. Although some values’ relevance need not be articulated – take for example, “pangangalaga sa sarili” which is needed in order that one may do problem solving, obviously – almost all values’ pertinence to problem solving has to be explained e.g. “konsensya” (p. 7), “ispiritwalidad” (pp. 7-8), and “tiwala sa sarili” (p. 9). In relation to the preceding statement which drives at the point that the curriculum does not seem to value practicality and reasoning as much as it values spirituality, the EsP guide, in addition, does not provide any clear instruction on how to equip students with the skills necessary for moral and practical reasoning. There are no methods required or suggested throughout the curriculum. And regarding the fourth statement, where a majority (strongly) disagree, it could be proved that creative and imaginative thinking has very little place in the curriculum.
Consider the learning competencies which are very limiting – an example would be the ways “pagkakabuklod ng pamilya” could be shown: “pagsasama-sama sa pagkain”, “pagdarasal”, “pamamasyal”, and “pagkukwentuhan ng masasayang pangyayari” (p. 18). Nothing else but these four are included, as if these are the only ways the value can be demonstrated. There should have been “at iba pa” which was used under the same category in page 17. Additionally, the curriculum guide quite explicitly states that the only way to address problems is through adhering to God’s laws. Notice how a Grade 10 student starts the “Ikaapat na Markahan: Ang Aking Posisyon sa mga Isyung Moral” with “Mga Gawaing Taliwas sa Batas ng Diyos at Kasagraduhan ng Buhay” (p. 96).
And again,there are no methods required or suggested by the curriculum which may provide any clear instruction on how to equip students with the skills necessary for highly creative and imaginative thinking. Finally, the good number of respondents who (strongly) disagree with the fifth statement accounts for the fact that there is no list of reading materials offered by the EsP curriculum guide. 2. Answers of Respondents to the Statements under Progressivism and Social Reconstructionism Table 2. Answers of Respondents to the Statements under Progressivism and Social Reconstructionism
Figure 2. Answers of Respondents to the Statements under Progressivism and Social Reconstructionism
As shown in Table 2 and Figure 2, 14 or 70% of the respondents agree with the first statement; eight (8) or 40% disagree but six (6) or 30% agree with the second statement; 13 or 65% strongly disagree with the third statement; nine (9) or 45% disagree with the fourth statement; and nine (9) or 45% are undecided and six (6) or 30% disagree with the last. While it is revealed that almost half of the respondents or 47% (strongly) disagree with the curriculum’s possessing of the qualities that define Progressivism and Social Reconstructionism, the figure does not fall far from the 35% who (strongly) agree.
Most of the EsP curriculum guide’s proposed contents are generalizing, without any regard for context. For example, under learning competencies, the value “honesty” is taught to be applicable in all situations – notice how this is phrased: “nagsasabi ng totoo sa magulang/nakatatanda at iba pang kasapi ng mag-anak sa lahat ng pagkakataon upang maging maayos ang samahan” (p. 19). Without much relevance, the EsP curriculum guide cannot clearly state the social and practical relevance of its proposed contents, except, of course, theoretically. This condition may account for the number of respondents that agree with the first statement.
With the second statement, some disagree and some agree. This may be caused by the curriculum for Grades 1-6 requiring teachers and students to conduct outdoor activities, but by the curriculum for Grades 7-10 not requiring such. Part of the evaluation of elementary students is how they act outside the classroom (pp. 17-49), but in the latter, learning competencies are not as specific (pp. 51-98), and thus outdoor activities may be optional or may not be required at all.
However, throughout the curriculum, there is no mention of whatever is required of an EsP teacher. And whether the problems or issues that the curriculum wishes to address are socially relevant cannot be ascertained due to the selection of words that are open to various interpretations e.g. in “kawalan ng paggalang sa katotohanan” (p. 98), one may ask what is “paggalang” and what is “katotohanan”.
And again, there is no mention on how classroom teaching will be delivered or how and what textbooks will be used to develop social consciousness, except the curriculum’s recommendation to use online or web-based resources in teaching some parts of the curriculum (p. 17). This may be what accounts for the number of respondents who disagree and agree with the last statement. 3. Answers of Respondents to the Statements under Analytic Philosophy Table 3. Answers of Respondents to the Statements under Analytic Philosophy
Figure 3. Answers of Respondents to the Statements under Analytic Philosophy
According to Table 3 and Figure 3, nine (9) or 45% and eight (8) or 40% strongly disagree and disagree with the first statement respectively; nine (9) or 45% strongly disagree with the second; nine (9) or 45% strongly disagree and another nine (9) or 45% disagree with the third statement; 11 or 55% strongly disagree with the fourth; and six (6) or 30% strongly disagree, five (5) or 25% disagree, and another five (5) or 25% agree with the last. It is obvious that 79% of the respondents (strongly) disagree while only 16% (strongly) agree with the five statements that describe the curriculum as having the qualities of Analytic Philosophy.
A large portion of the respondents strongly disagree with the first four statements. This is because the EsP curriculum guide has very low regard for language and structure. There are several misspellings and other mistakes throughout the curriculum: “pagpapasaya” instead of pagpapasiya (p. 9), “Baitng” (p. 14), “bansa/daigdig” – regarding them as synonyms (p. 15), and text missing due to bad formatting (p. 15). Furthermore, the matrix of content/values (pp.10-13) would not suggest the promotion of analytic thinking. In K, 8 values are taught. In Gr. 1, 22; in Gr. 2, 31; in Gr. 3, 30; in Gr. 4, 23; in Gr. 5, 17; in Gr. 6, 18; in Gr. 7, 1; in Gr. 8, 2; in Gr. 9, 3; and in Gr. 10, 6. The values, instead of being taught from the most general down to the specifics, are taught the other way around. Thus, it could be said that the curriculum guide does not provide a model of analytic thinking.
The curriculum guide is also very unclear and is not at all precise with its descriptions and directives – from the headings (“Gabay sa Kurikulum ng K to 12” to be followed by “Grades 1 to 10”, front page and “Matrix of Content/Values for K to 6” that includes that of K-10, page 10) to the values themselves: “pagmamahal” and “pagkakawanggawa (charity)” are confused (p. 8) and “Diyos” may include that of the Catholic Church, Buddha, and even Dr. Jose Rizal.
And although the definition of the curriculum’s concept of value is not stated at all, the values included in the curriculum may give a definition of its concept. It cannot however be discerned whether it is clear and precise; as it would be highly relative.
And whether the EsP curriculum guide offers a clear and precise definition of the concept of a “good person” remains questionable, which may be the reason behind the figures of those who disagree and agree with the fifth statement. The EsP curriculum guide defines a good person as someone who is God-fearing. This is made very clear with the juxtaposition of “preference for the good” with “love of God”, the only seemingly consistent value under Values Mapping: “Pananampalataya sa Diyos” (pp.7-9), and the assumption of man being intrinsically good (p. 3). But whether this is a precise definition, or whether this is a “good person”, is debatable.
4. Answers of Respondents to the Statements under Existentialism Table 4. Answers of Respondents to the Statements under Existentialism
Figure 4. Answers of Respondents to the Statements under Existentialism
Based on Table 4 and Figure 4, 10 or 50% of the respondents strongly disagree and nine (9) or 45% disagree with the first statement; seven (7) or 35% agree while five (5) or 25% disagree with the second; nine (9) or 45% and eight (8) or 40% strongly disagree and disagree with the third, respectively; eight (8) or 40% strongly disagree and seven (7) or 35% disagree with the fourth; and seven (7) or 35% disagree but six (6) or 30% agree with the last statement. It is clear that more than half or 69% of the respondents (strongly) disagree while only a little more than a quarter (strongly) agree with the five statements that describe the curriculum as possessing the qualities of Existentialism.
Although the EsP curriculum guide teaches “self-worth” and self-discovery as the first of its four (4) themes and the value “paggalang sa paniniwala ng iba” (p. 13), there is no method required or suggested by the curriculum that may instruct school teachers and textbook writers. This is clearly what accounts for the high figure of respondents who strongly disagree with the first statement.
There is also a great number who strongly disagree with the third on the account that there is no method required or suggested by the curriculum and values are imposed on the students by the EsP curriculum itself. The values were selected by the curriculum developers, other stakeholders such as parents and students were not consulted, and to love God is deemed necessary, just to name a few.
And because of this same reason, the majority of respondents also strongly disagree with the fourth statement. How the students’ learning needs will be addressed still remains in question nevertheless. The EsP curriculum guide could of course be modified by the teacher to suit his/her students’ learning needs.
Lastly, some respondents disagree and still some agree with the fifth statement – a number which may be a result of a confusion. Although it seems like the curriculum would emphasize responsibility for one’s own actions and/or decisions, freedom of thought, and respect for individuality regardless of the learner’s worldview, philosophy, or ideology, the curriculum itself would be a contradiction. In more simple terms, there is preaching but there is no practice.
SUMMARY, CONCLUSIONS, AND RECOMMENDATIONS
Those who have participated in the survey have provided answers to the problems presented in this research which are the following: a) The prevalence of Essentialism and Perennialism in Gabay sa Kurikulum ng K to 12: Edukasyon sa Pagpapakatao; b) The prevalence of Progressivism and Social Reconstructionism in Gabay sa Kurikulum ng K to 12: Edukasyon sa Pagpapakatao; c) The prevalence of Analytic Philosophy in Gabay sa Kurikulum ng K to 12: Edukasyon sa Pagpapakatao; and d) The prevalence of Existentialism in Gabay sa Kurikulum ng K to 12: Edukasyon sa Pagpapakatao. Summary
1. Majority of the respondents do not think that any of the four philosophies prevailed in the creation of the Gabay sa Kurikulum ng K to 12: Edukasyon sa Pagpapakatao. The results show that for every philosophy, more than half of the respondents disagree with the five (5) statements it includes. 2. The most prevalent philosophy in Gabay sa Kurikulum ng K to 12: Edukasyon sa Pagpapakatao out of the four is Progressivism and Social Reconstructionism.
Although the majority of respondents (strongly) disagree with its five (5) statements, the said philosophy gained the most number of respondents who (strongly) agree. 3. Gabay sa Kurikulum ng K to 12: Edukasyon sa Pagpapakatao almost rejects the philosophies Essentialism and Perennialism. With more than three-quarters of the respondents (strongly) disagreeing with the five statements, the curriculum is revealed to lack regard to what is and should be essential to education. 4. Gabay sa Kurikulum ng K to 12: Edukasyon sa Pagpapakatao almost discards Analytic Philosophy. With the great majority of respondents (strongly) disagreeing with the five statements under Analytic Philosophy, it is shown that there is an almost complete disregard to the process of analysis and the accuracy vital in using language. Conclusions
It is clear that almost all of the respondents (strongly) disagree with the five statements under all the philosophy, establishing the proof that the curriculum needs to be scrapped as its contents contradict itself. It is also interesting to note how a great percentage of respondents (strongly) disagree with the statements when the latter not only describes the philosophy they are under, but stresses the positive points of that philosophy. Thus by their (strongly) disagreeing with the statements, they (strongly) agree to the reverse – the negative points. Recommendations
The researcher would like to recommend the following:
1. The Department of Education should scrap the Gabay sa Kurikulum ng K to 12: Edukasyon sa Pagpapakatao altogether. Mere modification of the curriculum will never suffice as it is proven to be a bland concoction of philosophies, some which are possibly not named in this study. 2. The Department of Education should replace all the creators of the curriculum with experts on Values Education, pedagogy, and educational philosophies from several educational institutions. The curriculum that will be created should be further modified by consulting various stakeholders such as the parents and the teachers who will directly implement the curriculum. 3. Textbooks based on the new curriculum must be included in the curriculum itself and be published.
Or, at the very least, a reading list be provided to guide the educators in using the curriculum. 4. Gabay sa Kurikulum ng K to 12: Edukasyon sa Pagpapakatao must be named differently. If it is for K to 12, then it is only appropriate that it include the curriculum for Grades 11 and 12. It should also be done to be consistent not only philosophically but also content-wise to ensure spiralling. Furthermore, the subtitle Edukasyon sa Pagpapakatao has to be discarded; such connotes that Values Education is the only subject taught in school that renders an individual human. 5. Other researchers may want to further analyze the data of the survey or conduct a similar survey for the same purpose.