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    Posted January 8, 2014 by

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    Phl senator defends old school calendar

    A Philippine senator on Wednesday said rushing any new changes of the country’s school calendar would entail more adjustments and could have repercussions.
    "I am open to a discussion on the pros and cons of moving the opening of classes from June to September,” Sen. Pia Cayetano said, adding that if it will benefit us in the long run and if we can properly make the transition, she will then support it.
    The proposal to move the start of the school year to September was discussed at a Senate hearing during the 15th Congress. But the discussions then were focused on weather factors, since the issue of ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) integration had not cropped up yet at the time.
    "The situation is entirely different now that we are considering the prospect of aligning our academic calendar with those of our neighbors by 2015. As one of the region's most dynamic economies, I agree that there are benefits that may be gained by way of opportunities to develop our human resources as universities in the ASEAN are integrated into one regional academic community,” Cayetano said.
    But she said the solution is not as simple as resetting the school calendar for the sake of compliance.
    “The country's top four universities have decided to adjust their schedules ahead, but only after conducting lengthy consultations and by ensuring that their respective academic programs, facilities and faculty are prepared for integration,” the lady senator pointed out.
    She said that as autonomous units, the four universities should be allowed to go ahead and explore opportunities under this new system.
    "How about the school calendars of other colleges and universities? And our schools in the basic and secondary levels, which would inevitably be affected? This is where the consultations of the Commission on Higher Education (CHEd) and Department of Education (DepEd) would come in,” Cayetano said.
    She also said that all the possible effects of revising our school calendar must be taken into considerations by carefully weighing social, cultural, economic and other factors that are unique to our country.
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