Teachers: We didn’t make modules
While the Teachers’ Dignity Coalition (TDC) welcomed the Department of Education’s (DepEd) call to lessen the load of students under distance learning, it stressed that it was unfair to shift the blame for modular errors to educators and local offices.
In a statement, TDC national chair Benjo Basas explained that teachers had been hard at work months before classes in public schools reopened on Oct. 5, which required them to accomplish weekly reports, attend webinars and online meetings, and distribute modules.
“After addressing the many concerns of parents and the public due to confusion [in handling the different learning modalities], teachers are still the ones being blamed for errors in modules even if they were not the ones responsible for these,” Basas said.
Students reported feeling overwhelmed and exhausted just in the first week of classes when some of them were asked to accomplish within a few days three weeks’ worth of assignments.
In the DepEd’s defense, Diosdado San Antonio, undersecretary for curriculum and instruction, appealed to teachers to make some exercises and activities in the modules optional to prevent “burnout” among students.
However, Basas clarified that teachers did not decide on the content of the students’ self-learning modules, which proved that the agency was “unprepared” for the reopening of classes, contrary to the DepEd’s insistence that Oct. 5 was the education sector’s “victory” against the COVID-19 pandemic.
He added that these errors were an indication that the DepEd had to address “much deeper problems” when it comes to the distance learning modalities.
“If these missteps continue to happen, then the DepEd’s and teachers’ efforts in producing modules will be put to waste. It seems that we will be having difficulty delivering the education that our students and their families deserve,” Basas said.
San Antonio admitted to only one of at least 35 modular errors—a black-and-white module that instructed students to match colors with their names—disclosing that it had slipped past quality assurance measures in the DepEd Central Office.
He cited 18 instances in which error-filled modules were produced in regional or division offices, while he could not determine the origin of 15 others.
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