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‘Castrated’ MTB-MLE

Dr. Ricardo Nolasco

Dr. Ricardo Nolasco

By Ricardo Ma. Duran Nolasco, PhD
Philippine Daily Inquirer
Friday, September 13th, 2013
(rnolasco_upmin@yahoo.com)
Associate Professor, UP Department of Linguistics

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The term “castration” refers to the removal, by surgical or other means, of the reproductive organ of an animal. The intention is to prevent the animal from spreading an “undesired” genetic trait in succeeding generations.

This is precisely what the implementing rules and regulations of Republic Act No. 10533 (otherwise known as the K-to-12 Law) appear to be doing to the Mother Tongue-Based Multilingual Education (MTB-MLE) provisions of the original law.

The IRR provide, albeit illegally, foreign and local lobbyists of the discredited bilingual-education policy with enough escape clauses for them to continue defying the law.

This introductory clause in Rule II, 10.4 circumscribes all the other language provisions: “The curriculum shall develop proficiency in Filipino and English, provided that the learners’ first and dominant language shall serve as the fundamental language of education.”

This provision, absent in the original law, confirms suspicions that the government’s language-in-education policy is MTB-MLE in name but L2 bilingual education in practice.

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Use of Mother Tongue Beyond Grade 3

young_boy_28480_mthManong Joe,

Here is a copy of a PowerPoint Presentation about late-exit or extended Mother Tongue (MT) education, which you may find useful.

It includes extensive research about the role of MT in upper primary grades, possibilities for extended MT in the Philippines, and constraints.

I presented it as a plenary session at the K-12 International Research Conference in Bicol last week. My goal was to make a comprehensive summary of extended MT education and related issues.

Kind regards,

Firth

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Click on the title, Use of Mother Tongue Beyond Grade 3, to view the PowerPoint Presentation. When PowerPoint opens, choose “Slide Show”  on the menu bar and click on the green arrow to have the presentation on full screen. Tap on the space bar to advance to the next page, or if you’re using a tablet or smartphone, you may have to scroll from page to page.

Use of Mother Tongue Beyond Grade 3

By Firth McEachern
Consultant on Language and Education

NAKEM, on behalf of 3 students excluded from Laoag school, responds to Shah apology

The International Committee in Support of Bautista, Abadilla, and Respicio
c/o Nakem Conferences International
2540 Maile Way, Honolulu, HI 96822
T. 808-366-9000, nakemconferences@gmail.com
August 15, 2013 PST/August 16, 2013 PHLT 
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Rev. Brian Shah

Rev. Brian Shah

In his public apology, the Rev. Brian Shah conveys that he had already apologized to the parents of Carl Andrew A. Abadilla, Kleinee Xieriz Bautista, and Samuel G. Respicio, the three students he unjustly and unduly excluded from the Saviour’s Christian Academy (SCA) for violating its English-only policy.

While the apology may read sincere, it fell short of the more important aspect of a decent apology, i.e. the full recognition of all his misdeeds.
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Expulsion of 3 students in Ilocos Norte prompts House probe

Rep. Rudy Fariñas

Rep. Rudy Fariñas

Rep. Terry Ridon

Rep. Terry Ridon

Sometimes, one wishes that members of congress were aware of the laws, especially the ones they just passed. I’m of course referring to RA 10533, otherwise known as the Enhanced Basic Education Act of 2013 which was just signed into law by Pres. Aquino on May 15, 2013. I’m sure that during the deliberations on the house and senate bills which eventually became RA 10533, they became aware of DepEd Order No. 74 s. 2009 institutionalizing the use of the mother tongue as the medium of instruction from kindergarten to third grade and as auxiliary medium of instruction to Filipino and English from Grade 4 to high school because DO 74 became the basis of the Multilingual Education provisions of RA 10533.

They just seem unable to put a finger on which laws or constitutional provisions or international laws or whatever were violated when Saviour’s Christian Academy in Laoag City “advised” 3 students to transfer out of the school effective immediately (July 31, 2013) reportedly because someone ratted on the students to have been speaking Ilocano on campus in violation of an English-only policy.

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Petition Pres. Aquino to scrap English-only policy in schools

Pres. Aquino

Pres. Aquino

Dr. Ricardo Nolasco

Dr. Ricardo Nolasco

Dr. Ricardo Ma. Nolasco of the UP Linguistics Department reports that the following on-line and off-line petition calling for the scrapping of the English-only policy in Philippine schools has been launched by the UP Samahang Linggwistika and UP Layap. The petition is to be sent to Philippine President Benigno Simeon Aquino III (op@president.gov.ph) on August 19, 2013.

It will be recalled that the President signed the Enhanced Basic Education Act 0f 2013 (RA 10533) just last May 15th and the new law has Multilingual Education provisions enshrined in its Section 4 as follows:

“Basic education shall be delivered in languages understood by the learners as the language plays a strategic role in shaping the formative years of learners.

For kindergarten and the first three (3) years of elementary education, instruction, teaching materials and assessment shall be in the regional or native language of the learners. The Department of Education (DepED) shall formulate a mother language transition program from Grade 4 to Grade 6 so that Filipino and English shall be gradually introduced as languages of instruction until such time when these two (2) languages can become the primary languages of instruction at the secondary level.”

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DepEd, in spite of recent MLE initiatives, is slow to scuttle archaic English-only school policies

By Napoleon Imperial
Deputy Executive Director
Commission on Higher Education

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After the issuance of the DO 74 in 2009, I am not sure if DepEd ever issued any supporting order to forbid the English-only policy and the practice of imposing fines on learners speaking in their mother tongue.

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Napoleon B. Imperial

Dr. Napoleon B. Imperial

It’s August and the month of celebrating our Inang Wika. So I feel compelled to express my thoughts on the recent controversy of three students “expelled” by a supposed Christian school (Saviour’s Christian Academy) in Ilocos Norte. I feel saddened and regretful that something like this still has to happen among the country’s basic education schools at this stage of our educational history.

I don’t wish to defend that sectarian school and its owner/manager. But I am not surprised at all. I can see that we had it coming and that it is still bound to happen.

I can well recall that even before and after we successfully (at last) worked on the DepEd Order institutionalizing MLE (DO No.74 s.2009), many private schools openly prided themselves of implementing a Speak-English-only policy. This was even supported or re-enforced by some local government chief executives that made them re-electable. After the issuance of the DO in 2009, I am not sure if DepEd ever issued any supporting order to forbid the English-only policy and the practice of imposing fines on learners speaking in their mother tongue.

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DepEd: Students can’t be expelled for speaking Ilocano

Tonisito MC Umali

DepEd Asst. Sec. Tonisito Umali

DepEd Assistant Secretary Tonisito Umali says that under the manual of regulations, a private school has the power to craft its own policies and sanctions that “must be equal to the offense of the student” but that expulsion of a student is a penalty that must be approved by the Office of Education Secretary. Well, on account of the apparent mishandling of the case of the three students “advised to transfer” out of Saviour’s Christian Academy for speaking Ilocano within the confines of the school campus, I believe it’s high time that “manual of regulations” allowing the speak-English-only-in-school language policy imposed by any school is examined thoroughly and realigned with recent laws pertaining thereto. Even the language policy under Article XIV of the 1987 Philippine Constitution does not mention an “English-only” language policy:

“Section 7. For purposes of communication and instruction, the official languages of the Philippines are Filipino and, until otherwise provided by law, English.

The regional languages are the auxiliary official languages in the regions and shall serve as auxiliary media of instruction therein.

The regional languages, of which Ilocano is one, shall serve as auxilliary media of instruction.

Then, as recently as May 15, 2013, President Aquino signed into law the Enhanced Basic Education Act 0f 2013, otherwise known as RA 10533. Section 4 of this law provides:

For kindergarten and the first three (3) years of elementary education, instruction, teaching materials and assessment shall be in the regional or native language of the learners. The Department of Education (DepED) shall formulate a mother language transition program from Grade 4 to Grade 6 so that Filipino and English shall be gradually introduced as languages of instruction until such time when these two (2) languages can become the primary languages of instruction at the secondary level.

The law is rather clear — whether it be the 1987 Constitution or RA 10533 — the languages of instruction applicable to all under the basic education program governed by DepEd, and specifically to the three Grade 8 students who were essentially dismissed from Saviour’s Christian Academy because they violated a “speak-English-only-in-school” policy are: (1) Filipino, (2) English, AND (3) the regional language (Ilocano in this case) as auxiliary medium of instruction. If DepEd has a manual of regulations with provisions that run afoul of the above provisions of the 1987 Constitution and/or RA 10533, now is the time to scuttle those provisions and clear the way for reason and common sense.

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