School year starts with protests vs. K-to-12 program

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Rep. Antonio Tinio leads a protest of his party-list group, the Alliance of Concerned Teachers, against the K-to-12 program.

(CNN Philippines) — While some students and teachers prepare to go back to school, others prepare to rally once more against the K-to-12 program.

For some, like the Alliance of Concerned Teachers, the year-end report of the Department of Education shows clear signs that the system is not yet ready for K-12.

The ACT used the data of DepEd's Physical Plan as of December 2014 to come up with the following statistics:

The number of classrooms still needed from kinder to high school is at nearly 113,000.

The number of textbooks still needed is almost 24,000,000.

The number of teachers still needed is at roughly 57,000.

Raymond Basilio, ACT public information officers, said these shortages have to be addressed first before K-to-12 can be properly implemented.

For her part, Andrea Daser, as student who plans to become a public school teacher, has the same idea.

Speaking in Filipino, she said: "Having an additional two years in school shouldn't be a problem. But with so many things lacking in facilities and materials — and even teachers, maybe we should study this curriculum more closely."

Zendy Ballard, a recent graduate who plans to be a volunteer teacher in Mindanao, already has some experience teaching in a public school. She found it frustrating.

"It's already the 21st century, but how can your teaching reach 21st century stands when your facilities are not even complete?" she said in Filipino.

"We are not against quality education. Actually, that's what we really want. But what's wrong is the way government is implementing it. It's adding to the problem. It shoud first solve the old problems."

Yet DepEd remains steadfast in its plans to implement the two years of senior high school by school year 2016-2017.

With only one school year left before K-to-12 is fully implemented DepEd has little time to waste to reach their target numbers.

An estimated 23 million students from 46,624 public elementary and high schools all over the country returned to school on Monday (June 1).