Filipino and Panitikan excluded as core subjects in college: Aye or Nay

The Supreme Court (SC) has ruled with finality that the Filipino and Panitikan or Philippine Literature can be excluded as core subjects in college. “No further pleadings or motions shall be entertained in this case. Let entry of final judgment be issued immediately,” said SC clerk of court Edgar Aricheta.

The SC en banc stood by its ruling last Oct. 9 in a five-page resolution after petitioners failed to present substantive new arguments that would have swayed the justices to change their opinion.

This decision has been criticized by those who believe that it is a necessity to include the country’s native language in core curricula.

In a statement, CHED Chairperson Prospero de Vera III said promoting Filipino language is not limited to teaching it in schools.

Moreover, De Vera said -

"The accusation of critics that CHED is anti-Filipino is wrong,"

"The Commission believes in the fundamental role played by language in education. To be properly cultivated, Filipino cannot merely be taught as a subject, but must be used in oral and written forms, across academic domains."

"CHED did not abolish Filipino and Panitikan in the General Education Curriculum. Instead, these were transferred to the Senior High School level since these are important building blocks in the preparation of senior high students to be university-ready when they graduate,"

He also called on colleges and universities to exercise their academic freedom "to include innovative reforms in their various curricula that may include language proficiency not just in Filipino but also other Philippine languages such as Ilocano, Waray, Cebuano, Ilonggo, Pangasinan, Bicolano, and Asian languages that will make graduates regionally and globally competitive."

De Vera likewise assured the public that “CHED will support colleges and universities that will pursue language innovation while providing scholarship and professional education assistance to affected Filipino and Panitikan teachers through the K to 12 Transition Program Fund.”

Upon the implementation of the K-12 program in 2011 which have added two more years of senior high school, I think it is just right to exclude Filipino and Panitikan in college core subjects. However, it should depend also on the college course. Some courses in college like BSEd, ABCommunications and the likes still have the need to include it in their core curricula.

It is public knowledge that Filipino and Philippine Literature were already taught in the basic education curriculum: elementary, junior and senior high school level. Instead of teaching other foreign language, in my opinion, it is best to focus on these two subjects to engrave Patriotism and knowledge in our own culture.

Since Filipino and Panitikan were delisted as mandatory subjects in some college courses, it does not mean that we already have forgotten our native language. College subjects should focus on exposing students to different channels of knowledge to develop intellectual competencies and capabilities to prepare them to actual realities of life after graduation.

Now, my take on this matter is definitely Aye!  What about you?


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