UP, PNU to train public school teachers for senior high

Jee Y. Geronimo

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UP, PNU to train public school teachers for senior high
State universities plan to adopt smaller schools and train their master teachers on the new senior high school curriculum

MANILA, Philippines – Two prestigious state universities have committed to help train public school teachers who will teach in senior high school starting 2016 – the year the K to 12 program will be fully implemented.

Top officials from the University of the Philippines (UP) and the Philippine Normal University (PNU) urged other universities – whether public or private – to do the same. (READ: Many schools not yet training teachers for K to 12)

“I’m sure that universities will be happy to collaborate with CHED and DepEd on the teacher training programs,” PNU President Ester Ogena said during the Senate committee hearing on the preparations for K to 12 on Tuesday, April 14.

In the nationwide rollout of senior high school, the Department of Education (DepEd) will need to hire 30,000 to 41,000 teachers every year for 2016 and 2017. (INFOGRAPHIC: 10 things about K to 12)

Teachers in more than 5,800 existing DepEd schools will need training to teach senior high school, and the country has 1,923 higher education institutions that can offer their training expertise to these public schools.

According to DepEd K to 12 coordinator Elvin Uy, the current junior high school teacher training program ranges from 5 to 7 days at the minimum. The Commission on Higher Education (CHED) supports this program by developing teacher guides for core courses.

But the plan of UP is to get hundreds of its faculty members who teach general education courses to train master teachers of public schools for 3 weeks. In turn, these teachers can cascade the training in their respective schools.

“This is a major commitment of our university as a national university, and it would be counted as part of our workload credit,” UP Vice President for Academic Affairs Gisela Concepcion said on Tuesday.

If this model works, Concepcion said they could tap other leading state universities and colleges to conduct trainings as well. 

UP’s teacher training is supposedly slated for 2016, but Senator Pia Cayetanoa member of the UP Board of Regents – urged the premier state university to schedule the training for 2015. 

For senior high school, there will be two types of trainings: content training for high school teachers, and pedagogy training for college professors.

Adopting high schools

Meanwhile, PNU is going for a different route by looking at high schools within Manila and starting from there.

In the case of Araullo High School, PNU will train Araullo’s senior high school teachers for two subjects: science and sports education. The university’s laboratories will also be made available if needed.

PNU will urge other universities from the National Network of Normal Schools to follow suit.

“At the end of school year, what we intend to do is come up with common materials so [schools] are guided on how to manage their senior high school program,” Ogena said.

The school’s long-term plan has to do with its mandate as the country’s national center for teacher education.

“The long-term approach will require a plan for producing future teachers who would be able to handle senior high school,” Ogena added.

Ogena said even college professors who will teach in senior high school must undergo training. 

“For now, as part of transition, I believe that the participation of the universities will be very, very essential. This is where we have content specialists in different fields, and if they handle the senior high school level courses, they have to be given a training as well,” she added.

DepEd earlier said it will prioritize in its hiring thousands of college professors who will potentially be displaced because of the K to 12 program. – Rappler.com

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Jee Y. Geronimo

Jee is part of Rappler's Central Desk, handling most of the world, science, and environment stories on the site. She enjoys listening to podcasts and K-pop, watching Asian dramas, and running long distances. She hopes to visit Israel someday to retrace the steps of her Savior.