PCCI calls for review of K-12, citing rapid pace of tech dev’t

K-12 STUDENTS at a high school in Marikina City during their in-person graduation ceremony on July 2, 2022. — PHILIPPINE STAR/ WALTER BOLLOZOS

THE Kinder to Grade 12 (K-12) basic education system needs to be reviewed to ensure that it keeps pace with the digitalization of the economy, according to the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI).

PCCI President George T. Barcelon added on the first day of the 48th Philippine Business Conference & Expo in Manila on Wednesday that “our teachers must be re-trained to keep pace with technological developments.”

“Children now need connectivity to the internet; they need computers and modern educational tools so that they can participate fully in this digital world we now live in,” he added.

The K-12 program added two years to basic education with the intent of making graduates employable after graduation.

Mr. Barcelon said the resumption of face-to-face classes in November is expected to boost the economy.

“Next month, our children will go back to school to attend face-to face classes. Two years of proper learning were disrupted due to the pandemic. Looking at the positive side, the reopening of schools will help stimulate the economy as consumption increases and more small businesses also open up that cater to this sector of our economy. The transport sector and school bus services will also revive,” Mr. Barcelon said.

The resumption of face-to-face schooling is part of a broader economic revival with the apparent waning of the pandemic, and propelled by government spending and tax reform, Mr. Barcelon said.

“We believe that the Philippine economy’s growth momentum will accelerate especially since the government is expected to sustain public spending on priority infrastructure projects under the Build Better, and More program. Also noteworthy is the tax reform all designed to jump start the investment climate,” Mr. Barcelon said.

Mr. Barcelon said the Philippines needs to “future-proof” its workforce by equipping them with upgraded skills.

“It is equally important and necessary for the Department of Education to be in sync with our long-term goals and adopt education strategies taking into consideration what will be tomorrow’s jobs,” Mr. Barcelon said.

“As for the future of business, we must build a resilient future through digitalization, enabling enterprise growth especially in the regions, and fostering innovation,” he added. — Revin Mikhael D. Ochave