The response of the US-Duterte regime remains failed and faulty to the widespread call and demand of youth, teachers, parents and the people for a safe and quality education as A.Y. 2020-2021 formally starts amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
Department of Education Secretary Leonor Briones’ statement that yesterday’s opening of classes for public schools was “victorious” is both insensitive and delusional. What the opening of classes only proves is the the hardship and suffering experienced by teachers, students and parents alike. Blended learning proved to be burdensome to the already disgruntled broad masses.
The quality of education is further compromised and the youth are even more deprived of our right for accessible and quality education as evident by the decline in enrollment. In Negros, public school enrolment recorded 303,218 compared to 322,346 last year while in private school enrolment only recorded 12,034 students compared to 28,800 last year. The dramatic rise in the number of out-of-school youth is appalling.
Blended learning proves to be impractical and elitist. Obviously, the Duterte regime is detached from the reality of the situation of the youth especially here in Negros where a family’s meager income is barely sufficient for basic needs. The additional expenses to be incurred for the purchase of gadgets, load and other necessities for blended learning is an added burden.
Thus, the future of the youth remains bleak as long as the country’s education system remains commercialized, colonial and fascist. A growing number of our youth is forced to quit school as exacerbated by the neoliberal education policy enforced by the burdensome, corrupt and butcher US-Duterte regime.
The youth no longer expects from the fascist Duterte, who continues to neglect and abandon his responsibility to the Filipino people. So as the hope of the nation, it is only just that the youth unite with the broad masses in advancing the national democratic revolution to achieve a nationalist, scientific and mass-oriented education. We will march into the streets and into the mountains to live and learn with the masses and wage armed revolution in order to eradicate the dying semicolonial and semifeudal system. Let us collectively resist in order to oust the corrupt, negligent and tyrannical US-Duterte regime and make him pay for his brutal crimes against the people! ###