MANILA, Philippines – In 2016, the Department of Education (DepEd) expects almost 20,000 senior high school students to take the sports and arts and design tracks under the K to 12 program.
To ensure they have schools to go to, the department on Tuesday, May 5, said students can expect at least one program for arts and design and one program for sports in every province.
"This is the first time that we are actually doing this to upgrade the skills of athletes, artists, and designers so that they can comply with the technical skills and levels that are recognized as middle level skills," Education Secretary Armin Luistro told reporters after he presented the K to 12 midterm report before the Senate committee on education, arts, and culture.
At least 1.2 million students will enter senior high school's grade 11 in 2016, and most of them are expected to take either the academic track (609,000 students) or the technical-vocational-livelihood track (596,000 students).
Out of the 5,899 DepEd schools that will offer senior high, 113 will offer the arts and design track to about 10,000 students, and 98 will offer the sports track to about 9,700 students. (INFOGRAPHIC: 10 things about K to 12)
Nurturing local arts, sports
While there are already existing sports schools and special programs for the arts in the country, Luistro said the two senior high school tracks will give kids the technical skills "to ensure that they will have a livelihood out of their interest."
"We identified ano 'yung mga eskwelahan sa Pilipinas na meron nang ganyang programa and we just upgraded the programs," Luistro explained.
(We identified what schools in the Philippines already have the programs and we just upgraded these programs.)
Luistro said these senior high school tracks will not only equip students with middle level skills but will also help provinces in nurturing their local arts and sports.
"It's a wonderful program that could be part of a school for living traditions, so that the next generations can continue that special, cultural skill or art. 'Yun 'yung ating binubuhay kaya sinisigurado natin na bawat probinsiya mayroong isang ganyan," he added.
(That's what we are reviving here so we're making sure that every province has the program.) – Rappler.com
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.