‘Keep graduation rites simple’

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THE Department of Education (DepEd) on Thursday reminded public school to make sure that graduation rites are simple, and that they be held on or before April 1, 2016.

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Education Secretary Bro. Armin Luistro, at the same time, warned politicians against using the graduation exercises as a podium to campaign.

“Further, the end of school year rites should be an appropriate and solemn ceremony befitting the learners and their parents and shall not be used as a political forum,” Luistro said.

With the theme Kabataang Mula sa K to 12, Tagapagdala ng Kaunlaran sa Bansang Pilipinas, the 2016 ceremonies shall focus on the K to 12 Basic Education Program as a transformative vehicle for local and national development, he added.

“Through the provision of quality education, the K to 12 Basic Education Program develops and harnesses the skills and competencies of the Filipino youth that will lead to human and community development. The graduation rites should be scheduled on or before April 1, 2016. For schools divisions or regions with an extended school year, schools will have to be guided by their approved revised school calendar,” the Education secretary said.

Meanwhile, Luistro added that in line with the government’s austerity program, the agency reiterates that graduation rites should be simple but meaningful affairs that encourage civil rights, a sense of community and personal responsibility.

“While these rites mark a milestone in the life of the learners, these should be conducted without excessive spending, extravagant attire or extraordinary venue; moving up or closing ceremonies should be simple, involving only the learners, their parents and the school; and non-academic projects such as attendance to field trips, film showing, junior-senior promenade and other school events should not be imposed as requirements for graduation or completion,” he said.

Expenses for graduation-related activities should be charged to the school’s Maintenance and Other Operating Expenses or MOOE under the 2016 national budget.

“Any DepEd personnel should not be allowed to collect any graduation/moving up/closing ceremony fees or any kind of contribution; Parent-Teachers Association may give donations in cash or in kind; and contribution for the annual yearbook, if any, should be on a voluntary basis,” Luistro said.

FRANCIS EARL A. CUETO

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