EDUCATION Secretary Armin Luistro admitted that delays in the construction of classrooms may delay the implementation of the senior high school program insome schools but he gave assurances that his department has a “plan B” to ensure the smooth opening of classes in June.
“The construction of classrooms in some other schools would be delayed for a few months, but we have a plan B for schools that will offer senior high school,” Luistro said in an interview over the weekend.
“I told them [school principals]to have a plan B. I said even if the classrooms are not yet completed, like for instance having a problem with the contractor, they should have a plan B in place to ensure that all the Grade 10 finishers in their school can enrol in Grade 11,” the DepEd chief added.
Should there be no available classrooms for incoming Grade 11 students, Luistro said their last option is to send students to schools using temporary learning spaces.
“Using makeshift classrooms would be the last option. But we have schools that have extra classrooms, so we will use it for the meantime,” he explained.
Luistro gave assurances that there will be enough teachers who will teach senior high school in the next school year.
He said at least 30,000 teachers will be hired this year for senior high school.
“We’re now doing the teacher hiring, and our school divisions have already downloaded the list. We’re now on the second month of hiring, and we will have the complete list of the newly hired teachers before June. The hiring process is so fast because application is online,” the DepEd chief added.
He said hiring of teachers will be per school based on early registration of the incoming senior high school students.
“But there will be an adjustment as we’re fast approaching the school opening because during the actual enrolment, some students are shifting to other courses or tracks. We will have a second way of hiring as we enter the month of June,” Luistro said.
At least 1.3 million students are expected to enrol in Grade 11 for the coming school year.
But Luistro said that 10 percent of the incoming Grade 11 students have not yet registered.
“I urge everyone if you know a child who did not yet register and does not know where to go, tell them to go to the division or nearest senior high school that has opening and register. We have so many slots for them,” he said.
Senior high school allows students to choose among four tracks—Academic, Technical-Vocational-Livelihood, Sports, and Arts and Design. These courses are designed to help learners prepare for higher education, employment, or entrepreneurship.