The quality of education in the Philippines is not as good as that in the US. There are a number of reasons why the Philippines should improve its quality of education. These include poor performance in international assessment tests, poor production of innovators, researchers, and knowledge producers, and inadequate investment in higher education institutions. These issues need to be addressed in order for the country to become an attractive destination for foreign investors.
Poor performance in international assessment tests
According to the latest PISA survey, the Philippines did not meet the expectations set by the world’s best education systems. The Philippines’ poor performance compares with those of countries with more money and higher investment in their education systems. Public investment in education is an important factor in national competitiveness, innovation, and economic progress. It also plays an essential role in civil society, particularly in encouraging youths to take up reading, improve their English proficiency, and develop analytical thinking. These results indicate a nationwide problem and require a concerted national effort to correct the situation.
The Philippines performed poorly in the OECD’s Programme for International Student Assessment. The Philippines scored 340 points, lower than the average global score of 487. This reflects the country’s poor basic education. At the same time, four out of five Filipino students were classified as Level 2 students.
While the Philippines had the highest percentage of non-English-speaking students in SEA-PLM 2019, it did not perform at the same level as the other OECD countries. Furthermore, a significant proportion of Filipino students reported experiencing bullying at least once in their lives. This compares to only 23 percent in OECD countries.
The Philippines had a poor performance in TIMMS 2019. While the scores in the science domain were higher than those of other participating nations, Filipino students were still behind their peers in other domains. For instance, in the fourth grade, Filipino students did worse than their peers in math and science. Their average scores in math and science were the lowest out of the 58 countries evaluated.
The Philippines is suffering from a serious lack of mathematics literacy. While some of children may have achieved basic reading skills by the end of primary school, they are far from mastering fundamental mathematical skills. This is reflected in their struggles to select answers from the options provided.
Lack of international survey of school performance
The lack of international surveys on school performance in the Philippines is a concern for educators and policymakers alike. According to the Department of Education, the national achievement test and PISA results indicate an “urgent need to improve the quality of basic education in the country.” It has therefore announced a series of reforms called Sulong Edukalidad, which includes aggressive reforms such as rethinking the K-to-12 program, improving learning facilities, and upskilling teachers. It is also seeking to engage various stakeholders in this process.
The Philippines’ educational system faces many problems, including a lack of funding, inadequate teacher salaries, and a lack of classrooms and facilities. Additionally, the government’s policy favors schools in Metro Manila, and far-flung areas show much lower levels of student performance. Despite these problems, the country’s basic education completion rate is comparable to other Asian economies and even to the West.
In order to understand the causes behind poor school performance, educators should look at the factors that affect the quality of education. One factor that is critical in determining teacher quality is the amount of training teachers undergo. If teachers are trained well, they can influence the quality of education in the country. The Enhanced Basic Education Act of 2013 is one such example. The law requires teachers to be well-trained in order to provide good education to students. It also requires teachers to be self-regulating and exert classroom effects.
Currently, traditional teaching methods are the norm in the Philippine medical school system. Approximately 74 percent of respondents said that no more than 8 hours per week were allocated to self-directed learning. This abrupt shift in curriculum delivery requires students to adjust their learning styles at the same time. Some teachers only provided handouts with text, while others provided PowerPoint files without voice narration. This would make it difficult for students who learn by visual and auditory methods.
Poor performance in producing innovators, researchers, and knowledge producers
The Philippine educational system has a poor track record in producing innovators, researchers, and knowledge producers. The Philippines has many state universities, although private institutions are also well-represented. State universities are funded by the national government and must offer a minimum number of bachelor’s degrees. In contrast, private schools provide tertiary education and are overseen by CHED.
The Philippines’ education system is in need of reform. It is lagging behind other SE Asian nations. While enrollment rates have increased in recent years, the Philippines still falls short of many reform goals, especially in the field of basic education. In 2013, for instance, only 81 percent of eligible children in the wealthiest 20 percent of households attended high school, compared to just 52 percent of children in the poorest 20 percent of households. Progress has been slow in some areas, such as higher education completion rates, which declined from 75 percent in 2010 to 74 percent in 2015.
The Philippines spends less on education as a percentage of GDP than other Southeast Asian countries. Its public education budget is only 3.5% of GDP, while its counterparts like Vietnam and South Korea spend around 5%. Education spending has decreased in the Philippines since 1998. In fact, the country’s spending per public elementary and secondary school student fell from 18.2 percent to just 12.4 percent in five years.
A government program to promote transnational education with foreign HEIs was introduced in the Philippines in 2016. Under this program, the foreign provider must be recognized by CHED before the program can be offered. The authorization is granted for one year for graduate programs and two years for undergraduate programs.
Lack of investment in HEIs
The Philippines does not have a high level of foreign investment in higher education. In fact, it ranks 65th out of 85 economies in terms of ease of doing business. Foreign investment is limited to a maximum of 40 percent of a company’s total equity. In the same way, foreign investment in private radio communications networks is prohibited.
This lack of foreign investment is not the result of a lack of potential investors in the Philippines. The country is still far behind its ASEAN neighbors in terms of attracting foreign investment. The United States is the leading foreign investor in the country, but its FDI inflow decreased by 0.7% in 2021 compared to 2020. While the Philippines continues to lag behind its ASEAN peers in attracting foreign investment, it has made progress in addressing its shortcomings in the last few years.
While there are a number of barriers to foreign investment in the Philippines, the country is positioned to play a bigger role in regional supply chains. Though the country suffers from pervasive graft and difficult foreign business regulations, it has the potential to be a key player in developing a fair and resilient supply chain. Furthermore, it can act as an anti-corruption pillar for the region.
The Philippine government’s lack of transparency is another hindrance. Foreign investors have complained of the long duration of investment disputes, which sometimes take years to resolve. In addition, corruption is rampant in the Philippine judiciary. Its actions have raised questions about the sanctity of contracts in the Philippines. It has reviewed contracts with independent power producers and challenged foreign participation in large-scale natural resource exploration activities. Furthermore, the government has stepped up efforts to reform the judiciary and ensure the protection of contracts.
Influence of colonial history on Philippine education system
The Philippines’ educational system is heavily influenced by colonial history. The Spanish colonists introduced western cultures to the Philippines, and the Filipinos slowly adopted the Spanish philosophy of life, language, culture, religion, games, and cuisine. These influences continue to influence Philippine education today.
Before the Spaniards came, education in the Philippines was mostly taught by parents and church members. The emphasis was on vocational training and less on academics. As a result, many Filipinos were taught to work for survival. The Spanish also focused on religious education; Spanish missionaries taught the religion. Throughout the colonial period, the Philippine educational system was influenced by various western educational systems. The American and Commonwealth countries, for example, implemented public schools with a focus on self-government, vocational training, and adult education. The Japanese system, on the other hand, made the Japanese language a compulsory subject in all schools.
The colonial era changed the educational system in the Philippines, but it was still important to educate Filipinos. Educated people could use their education to improve the country. In other words, education is the soul of society. After the colonial era, the Philippine educational system became more structured and focused on achieving that goal.
Despite the Spanish influence, Filipinos still have a strong faith in God. This is reflected in the education system, which was influenced by Spanish culture. The Spanish also brought the first public education system in Asia and the oldest universities and colleges. The Spanish had a strong hand in establishing the Philippine education system, and their influence can be seen in many aspects of the system today.
The United States also helped improve the education system in the Philippines. In 1901, President McKinley appointed the First Philippine Commission (also known as the Schurman Commission), which recommended free public elementary schools. Eventually, the United States sent over a thousand educators to the Philippines. Most of these teachers arrived on the S.S. Thomas, and were known as “Thomasites”. As a result, Philippine public school enrollment increased significantly from the previous year, from approximately 150,000 students in primary schools to a million or so in the rest of the levels of schooling.