DepEd to study effects of language on test performance

MANILA Department of Education (DepEd) Secretary Leonor Briones will further look into the effects of the choice of language on test performance as she acknowledged the need to strengthen the teaching and learning of English.

"Does the choice of language affect test performance? Reading in English is clearly a weakness of our learners, and this may also affect the performance of our learners in Science and Math, as the language of instruction and testing in later grades is English," Briones said at the launch of "Sulong Edukalidad" on Wednesday in Quezon City.

The Philippines got a poor ranking in the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) 2018, ranking the lowest among 79 countries that took part in the assessment.

The assessment results showed that the Philippines scored 353 in mathematics, 357 in science, and 340 in reading, all below the average of participating Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development countries.

The DepEd joined PISA in 2018 for the first time as part of its reform plans on quality basic education.

Briones said the agency is reviewing the basic education curriculum to address gaps.

Among the interventions include a curriculum review that aims to study the emphasis of the education system on foundational competencies, such as reading and mathematics, especially in the early grades.

"With this, I direct the Curriculum and Instruction strand, specifically Bureau of Curriculum Development, and Bureau of Education Assessment to study this further, but quite obviously we need to strengthen our teaching and learning in English if we are to continue with English as our language of instruction and testing," she said.

I direct that we make sure that through the curriculum review, these competencies are clearly articulated, and are not sacrificed by congestion of ancillary competencies, Briones said.

Briones said addressing the challenge of quality education would be a "difficult and long-drawn process" as she called for the support of all stakeholders.

"But to be efficient, one limiting variable for all of our efforts and interventions is to ask: How will this translate in the concrete at the school and classroom level? It is at the level of the school and the classroom that quality will ultimately depend," she said.

The Sulong Edukalidad program aims to address the country's need to improve the quality of basic education and would focus on four key areas the review and updating of the K to 12 program, the improvement of learning facilities, upskilling and reskilling of teachers and school heads, and the engagement of stakeholders for support and collaboration. (PNA)

Source: Philippines News Agency

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