Ka Leody: Reforming the Public Health Education System for Nation Building

Philippine education must shift its focus from supposedly serving individuals and big business to advancing the country, Partido Lakas ng Masa standard-bearer Leody De Guzman told educators and students at a meeting on Monday. a forum of private schools.

This shift, the union leader said, should accompany greater public funding for education in public and private schools.

At the forum organized by the Coordinating Council of Private Educational Associations of the Philippines (Cocopea), a group of private schools, De Guzman lamented the number of subjects and courses that only prepare young Filipinos to earn a living or to support their families and not to think about the well-being of the country.

He added that this system only benefits the wealthy and big business, a frequent target of De Guzman’s pro-worker platform that includes a tax on the wealthiest in the Philippines.

“Kung ganito ang klase ng edukasyon na umiiral—para sarili, para sa big business—kahit anong porma pa ng edukasyon, kahit ano pang mga ahensya o department the buuin natin, hindi angbagago ang kalagayan ing ating bansa,” he said.

“Pagpapayaman ng indibidwal anging kaisipan ng bawat isa, na para bang wala akong pakialam sayo, ako bahala sarili ko. Kompetisyon, ‘yon ang made-develop, hindi ‘yong isang lipunan.

This shift in mindset involves putting more effort into helping learners understand the history of the Philippines and the political and economic system, he said.

These, along with a greater focus on teaching critical thinking, should help more Filipinos guard against misinformation.

“Tingin ko ‘yong fake news naging matagumpay dahil ang tao, ‘yong criticizes nila kapos. Tinitingnan nila lumalabas on Facebook, social media, ‘pag nakikita nila yon na yon. Hindi nila tinitingnan: tama ba or mali? Ngayon kung hindi nila alam ang history, hindi nila makikita ang context, tatanggapin nilang iyon na iyon,” he said.

De Guzman favors increasing the country’s education budget to 6% of gross domestic product.

He said it would help give incentives to those who want to become teachers, increase teachers’ salaries, build more classrooms, hire additional school staff and improve school facilities and equipment.

He added that he saw nothing wrong with an education grant system where families would receive vouchers to pay for their children’s schooling.

However, he said, the modernization of public schools must be accelerated to bring them up to par with many private schools.

For De Guzman, education reform must be complemented by solving poverty and other woes of the country.

“Magkakaugnay ang mga bagay. Hindi pwedeng education lang, pero ‘yong economic hindi mo nire-resolve. Baka mga can pam-budget siya sa eskwelahan, wala naman siyang pagkain. Malnourished Siya. Kaya kinakailangan ‘holistic approach natin dahil binastard na ng ibang administrasyon ‘yong sistema ing lipunan – politically, economically, culturally – winasak na pinaglingkod lang sa interes nila nang walang pakialam kung ano ang mangyayari sa tao.

De Guzman is the second presidential candidate to run at the private school forum, following Vice President Leni Robredo in Pangasinan in early April.

The Cocopea said it is still trying to get other candidates to compete against their member schools on the forum broadcast online.

After the forum, De Guzman also met with community leaders and members at Parola Gate 1, also in Tondo, Manila, where he again detailed his platform for the country’s poor.

Jennifer C. Burleigh