The Spiral Progression in the K to 12

Basic Education Program

“Most important than the curriculum is the question of the methods of teaching and the spirit in which the teaching is given.”
BERTRAND RUSSEL, British philosopher and social critic

A Closer Look into K-12
Basic Education Program


Education outcomes in terms of participation, completion and achievement rates attest to this urgent need.

The poor quality of basic education is reflected in the low achievement scores of Filipino students in the National Achievement Test and international test like TIMSS.

One reason behind this is that students do not get adequate instructional time or time on task. This is partly due to the congested curriculum. The current 10-year basic education curriculum is designed to be taught in 12 years.

This has been affirmed in the study conducted by SEAMEO-Innotech where it noted that Philippine basic education is congested compared to the curriculum of Brunei Darussalam, Malaysia and Singapore. Specifically, it stated that elementary education is congested especially in Mathematics, Languages and Sciences.

Our high school graduates are not adequately prepared for the world of work. Most of the basic education graduates are too young to legally enter the labor force (below 18). This implies that those who will not go to college would either be unemployed or be vulnerable to exploitative labor practices. Those who may be interested to set up businesses cannot legally enter into contracts.

Our high school graduates are not adequately prepared to pursue higher education. They still have to undergo remedial and high school level classes in colleges and universities.

The 10-year basic education cycle hinders the recognition of Filipino professional abroad. The Washington Accord prescribes 12-years of basic education as an entry to recognition of engineering professionals. The Bologna Process also requires 12 years of education for university admission and practice of profession in European countries.

The Philippines is the only country in Asia and among the three remaining countries in the world that has a 10-year basic education cycle (Table 1).

TABLE 1. COMPARATIVE DATA ON DURATION OF BASIC AND PRE-UNIVERSITY EDUCATION IN ASIA Country Basic Education Cycle 11/12 12 12 12 Pre University Education 13/15 13 13 14

Cambodia Indonesia Lao PDR

Myanmar Philippines Singapore Thailand Timor-Leste Vietnam

11 10 11 12 12 12

12 10 12/14 12 12 14/15


Thus, the Department of Education in collaboration with various government and non-government stakeholders has developed the K to 12 Program which aims to improve basic education in the Philippines.

K To 12 Basic Education Program
Frequently Asked Questions

K to 12 Concerns

When will the K to 12 program be implemented?

Universal Kindergarten started in SY 2011 – 2012 The new curriculum for Grade 1 and 7 (High School Year 7) will be implemented in SY 2012 -2013 and will progress in the succeeding school years.

Grade 11 (HS Year 5) will be introduced in SY 2016 -2017 while Grade 12 (HS Year 6) in SY 2017 – 2018 The first batch of students to go through K to 12 will graduate in March 2018

Where will the additional two (2) years be added?

The two (2) years will be added after the current four-year high school program. This will be called Senior High School

Why are we implementing 12 years of basic education and not 11 years?

A 12 year program is found to be the adequate period for learning under basic education and is a requirement for recognition of professionals abroad (i.e. Bologna and Washington Accords)

Other countries like Singapore have 11 years of compulsory education but have 12 to 14 years of pre-university education depending on the track that the students would take.

Will this address the dropout problem?

The decongested curriculum will allow mastery of competencies and enable students to better cope with the lessons. This should partly address those who drop out from school because they cannot cope with school work

The curriculum will be learnercentered, enrich, and responsive to local needs. It will also allow students to choose electives/specializations that suits their interest. This should partly address those who drop out because of lack of interest.

DepED will also continue to offer programs such as home schooling for elementary students and dropout reduction program for high school. These programs address the learning needs of marginalized students and learners at risk of dropping out.

Why is the K to 12 better than the current program?

K to 12 offers a more balanced approach to learning that will enable children to acquire and master lifelong learning skills (as against a congested curriculum) for the 21st century. The current program crams a 12-year curriculum into 10 years making it difficult for a students to master competencies.

It will help in freeing parents of the burden of having to spend for college just to make their kids employable. A student who completes K to 12 will be equipped with skills, competencies and recognized certificates equivalent to a two-year college degree.

What would be the assurance that K to 12 graduates will be employed?

DepED has entered into an agreement with business organizations and local and foreign chambers of commerce and industries that graduates of K to 12 will be considered for employment.

There will be a matching of competency and standards so that 12years basic education graduates will have the necessary skills needed by the labor market.

How will K to 12 help in ensuring employment for our graduates? basic education  The K to 12
curriculum will be sufficient to prepare students for work.  The curriculum will enable students to acquire Certificate of Competency (COCs) and National Certifications (NCs). This will be in accordance with TESDA training regulations.

This will allow graduates to have middle level skills and will offer them better opportunities to be gainfully employed or become entrepreneurs.

There will be school-industry partnership for techvoc tracks to allow students gain work experience while studying and offer the opportunity to be absorbed by the companies.

How will the K to 12 programs help working students (college level)?

DepED is in collaboration with CHED to provide more opportunities for students to attend classes.
DepED is working with the Department of Labor to ensure that jobs will be available to K to 12 graduates and that consideration will be given to working students.

How will the K to 12 program help students intending to pursue higher education?

The K to 12 basic education curriculum will be in accordance with the college readiness standard from CHED which set the skills and competencies needed of K to 12 graduates who wish to pursue higher education.

CHED will download its general education subjects to Grades 1 to 12 ensuring mastery of core competencies for K to 12 graduates. This may lead to a reduction in the number of years of college course courses resulting to a decrease in educational expenses of household.


“Our responsibility is not only to motivate the students but also to discover what is causing them to lose their interests.”

What will happen to the curriculum? What subjects will be added and removed?

There will be a continuum from Kinder to Grade 12 (HS Year 6), and to technical and higher education.
The current curriculum will be decongested to allow mastery of learning.

In Grades 11 and 12 (HS 5 and 6), core subjects like Math, Science and English will be strengthened. Specializations in students’ areas of interest will be offered. Right now, a technical working group has formulated the new curriculum framework, standards, and competencies for K to 12. Experts from CHED, TESDA, and other stakeholders are part of this working group. After this, the changes in terms of subjects added, removed and

What specialization will be offered in senior high school?

The specialization to be offered include academics, middle-level skills development, sports and arts, and entrepreneurship. In general, specializations will be either college preparatory, immediate work/career readiness or a combination of both.


To Individuals and Families

An enhance curriculum will decongest academic workload, giving students more time to master competencies and for cocurricular activities and community involvement, thus, allowing for a more holistic development.

Graduates will possess competencies and skills relevant to the job market. They will attain Certificate of Proficiency, Certificate of Competency or National Certification in their area of specialization. Graduates will be better prepared for higher education.

K to 12 education is affordable. The cost to households of the additional two years in high school will be lower compared to a two year college education. The potential annual earnings of a K to 12 graduate will be higher compared to the earnings of a 10-year high school graduate.

Graduates will now be recognized abroad.

For the Society and the Economy

K to 12 will contribute to economic growth. Several studies have shown that improvements in the quality of education will increase GDP growth by as much as 2%.

K to 12 will facilitate mutual recognition of Filipino graduates and professionals in other countries. A better educated society provides a sound foundation for long-term socio-economic development.


The K to 12 curriculum is designed to develop a learner who possess a healthy mind and body; has a solid moral and spiritual grounding; has essential knowledge and skills for lifelong learning and self-actualization; engages in critical thinking and creative problem solving; contributes to the development of a progressive, jus and humane society; is proud to be a Filipino; and appreciates the beauty around him/her and cares for the environment for a sustainable future.

The K to 12 curriculum will be seamless and continuous decongested and enriched, research-based and learner-centered. It will also put an emphasis on the role of cocurricular activities and community involvement in maximizing learning. Kindergarten will be integrated into the basic education system, which is a bold step toward making all Grade 1 students a reader.

Senior high school will be in alignment with the 21st century skills and college readiness standards of CHED. The curriculum will focus on the core subjects, namely, Math, Science and English with electives that are sensitive and responsive to the learners’ interest and local industry needs. Graduates will be accredited in their areas of specializations which include Academics, Technical-Vocational, and Sports and Arts.

But what is this?

“Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.”

The Spiral

provide a beautiful continuum of learning for the student from kinder until he or she graduates from basic education curriculum Basics to detail

Students are expected at the end of Grade 10 to demonstrate communicative competence; think intelligently, critically and creatively in life situations; make informed and values-based decisions; perform their civic duties; use resources sustainably; and participate actively in artistic and cultural activities and in the promotion of wellness and lifelong fitness.”

The Shift in Paradigm
 The  The

Past – what is to input?

Present – what is the output?

 1.

A primary goal of education is the development and deepening of student understanding of big and enduring ideas at the heart of the discipline.

 2.

Evidence of student understanding is revealed when students apply knowledge and skills within authentic contexts.

 3.

In the course of the implementation of the K-12, regular reviews of curriculum and assessment designs, based on standards are needed for excellent evaluation to meet expectations and standards

 4.

Teachers provide opportunities for students to explain, interpret, apply, shift perspective, empathize and self-assess.

 What

do students want to know, be able to do, and understand?

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