House OKs Mandatory Preschool Education Bill

Article excerpt

A bill that makes preschool education a requisite for enrolment on the elementary level has been approved on third and final reading by the House of Representatives.

Endorsed by a group of lawmakers led by Reps. Nur Jaafar (Lakas, Tawi-Tawi), Juan Edgardo Angara (LDP, Aurora), and Del de Guzman (Lakas, Marikina City), House Bill (HB) 5467 received bipartisan support when presented on third reading before Congress adjourned last month.

Jaafar said the measure seeks to institutionalize pre-school education into the basic education system of the country.

"Pre-school education has been proven to be an important requisite in a child's formal education," Jaafar said.

Angara stressed that the bill is in consonance with the State's policy to provide equal opportunities for all children to avail themselves of free and compulsory preschool education that effectively promotes physical, social, intellectual, emotional, and skills stimulation as well as values information to sufficiently prepare them for formal elementary schooling.

De Guzman said HB 5467 will make it mandatory for all five-year-old children to enroll in a preschool in preparation for elementary education.

He explained that three years after enactment of the bill, no child will be admitted to Grade 1 without having attended at least one year of preschool.

HB 5467 provides that the Department of Education (DepEd) shall regulate the organization, operation, and or implementation of the preschool education through the Bureau of Elementary Education (BEE).

DepEd will also be tasked to oversee and supervise the implementation of the preschool education program throughout the country. …