Work training crucial for employers when hiring K to 12 graduates – group
MANILA, Philippines – Students in senior high school should undergo training or get work experience if they wish to proceed to employment straight after they graduate, advised a business and education coalition.
In a press briefing on Friday, August 17, Philippine Business for Education (PBEd) said experience – or at the very least exposure – from the workplace was among important factors employers looked for when hiring students graduating from the K to12 program.
“For employers, or HR (human resources) professionals, they really do encourage high school graduate or senior high school students to have an immersion in a company so they get exposed,” PBEd Executive Director Love Basillote said. (READ: Are companies still hesitant to hire K to 12 graduates?)
Basillote said immersion in the workplace was important because it is where students learn life skills and employability skills companies look for such as coming to work on time, learning how to be professional, and team work.
PBEd also said students could gain experience by taking up online learning courses and seeking advise from their school guidance counselors if they are not sure where to get work training.
Part of the vision of K to 12 is to ensure that graduates will be ready for employment in various industries upon finishing senior high school. But this 2018, as the biggest batch under the K to 12 program graduated from senior high school, many employers said they are not yet ready to hire applicants who are K to 12 graduates.
Goes both ways: PBEd also called on more companies to be open to offering internships to senior high school students so that employers themselves can become familiar with the students' skills.
"If we are to get rid of that diploma bias, we need employers to also see what the quality of senior high school graduates is like. They can have that opportunity to have a different perspective of [senior high school] through the immersion program," she said.
As part of its affirmative-action program, PBEd reaffirmed their support for the K to 12 program by opening employment opportunities to graduates.
The group signed an agreement on this with the Department of Education, the Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines, the Management Assocciation of the Philippines, the People Management Association of the Philippines, and the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
PBEd said it has so far gotten 17 companies to commit 2,000 employment opportunities for K to 12 graduates. Available positions include those in accounting, logistics, and customer service from the following industries: finance, BPO, hospitality, construction and manufacturing, services, and media, among others.
"With half a million K to 12 graduates poised to enter the workforce, the issue of employment necessitates all of us to deliver the promise of employability," PBEd chair Ramon del Rosario Jr said.
DepEd is also reviewing it's K to 12 curriculum to improve on the readiness of students either to enter work or proceed to college. – Rappler.com