Senior high students flock to technical courses

June 6, 2016 at 12:09 pm Leave a comment


By Yolanda Sotelo
LINGAYEN – About half of students entering senior high school (SHS)favor technical-vocational courses as those who enrolled in academic strands,  Maria Celia Junio-Fernandez, superintendent of Pangasinan Schools Division 1, said.
As of June 3, the enrollment for technical-vocational-livelihood (TVL) courses in the division has reached 3,915 while the four academic strands have a total enrollment of 4,011.
“Perhaps they are aware of the relevance and the need  for people with immediately employable skills. They can be holders of national certificates 2 or 3 upon completing the courses so they can find jobs  or start business at young age,”  Junio-Fernandez explained.
However,  she did not discount the fact that many of the students cannot afford the university expenses who they opt to go pursue technical-vocational courses.
Among the academic strands, the General Education Subjects (GAS), which would enable the students to pursue different college courses, attracted the most number of students (2,177) in the division. It is followed by Science Technology Engineering Math (Stem) which has 679 enrolles, Accountancy Business Management (ABM)with 706 enrolles and Humanities and Social Sciences (HUMMS) with 449 enrolles.
Aside from these strands, SHS also offers tracts on sports, arts and design, and pre-baccalaureate maritime course.
Only 113 of the 160 public secondary schools in the division were able to meet the criteria to enable them to offer senior high school, Junio-Fernandez said.
Private and state-run institutions and parochial or schools operated by the church are likewise allowed to offer SHS.
This means that students in the villages where the high school does not offer SHS have either to enrol in the “mother” high school or private insitutions.
“They would have to spend for their fare, but education is a partnership between the school and the parents. The government is providing the education for free, and cannot provide anymore for their fare expenses,” Junio-Fernandez said.
Some students opted to enrol in private institutions lured by the advertisements that the courses are free.
“That the claim is not true at all. The private schools will get paid for every student they enrol through the voucher program of the national government,” Junio-Fernandez said.
Under the voucher program, students who completed Grade 10 are entitled to certain amount if they enrol in private or state-run universities or technical vocational school. The amount depends on the location of the schools.
In Pangasinan, the voucher’s value is P17,500 each student which is released directly to the schools.
But some schools still collect certain amount from the students, Magdaleda Manaoat, principal of the Calasiao Comprehensive National High School (CCNHS).
“We have some students who enrolled in a private university which advertised that the senior high school was free. It turned out that there were payment for Ids which is more than P500, uniforms which is about P3,000, and others like books. Since they cannot afford those payments, they returned to us,” she said.
The CCNHS had 750 Grade 10 finishers but only 623 have so far enrolled for SHS courses.
“The others may have gone to private institutions. That is really their choice and we cannot stop them,” Manaoat said.
The school has three sections each on ABM and STEM strands, and two sections each on Information and Technology and Cookery which are under TVL strand. Each section has 40-55 students.
The building for the SHS is not completed yet, so to accomodate the SHS, the number of sections in the Grades 7 to 10 were reduced by increasing the students in each section.
For instance, the number of sections in Grade 7 was reduced from 25 to 20.
“We were able to free 15 classrooms to accomodate SHS,” she said.
When told that the quality of education could be affected with more students in each section, Manaoat said “that is a consequence but this is only a temporary measure as the building for SHS would be completed in September.”
In one university in Dagupan City, those in higher years in college were given schedules from late afternoon to nighttime. This was to accomodate the SHS who were given the morning to early afternoon schedules.

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Entry filed under: News.

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