I know there is a reason for everything, even the most stupid decision a person makes is still governed by reason. Much more with the Department of Education, they must have a reason for ordering all public school teachers to be considerate on giving their students take-home assignments on Fridays to work at it on weekends.
DepEd Memorandum No. 392, signed by Education Secretary Armin Luistro last September 16, mandates all teachers to minimize the giving of homework/assignments (at least) “to a reasonable quantity to give their pupils ample time to rest and relax at home for the rest of the day.”
There is no quarrel about the good intention of the education department. At least memo 392 gives time for the entire family to stay together, relax and enjoy each other’s company. At this point in time when the Filipino family is being threatened by all forms of problems such as “parental separations, neglect and abandonment of children, child abuse in various forms, juvenile delinquency, etc. this memo-circular of the department is in order; granting the children have a good week-end full of fun with their families.
I disagree however on the grounds that school children will become less serious with their studies. And all they have in mind is fun at the expense of forgetting all about their academic obligations.
But this is not all, in the provinces as well in the cities, most of the children from poor families are given special tasks to do at home during weekend. There is no parent-children bonding. Parents are too busy working or attending to their businesses to earn a living and support their families. To many families a weekend full of fun with children and parents is just impractical at this time when everybody is affected by the on-going world economic crisis. No homework to do on week end for most children does not matter– are many of them are still asked by their parents to help them in the farm to to attend to their sources of livelihood.
What is the fear of most of the teachers anyway? Right now that children are given that much assignment to do at home during weekend–many can not still comply. And the worse, many are still slow to learn and pass their subjects. So the teacher laments, how much more if they are not allowed to bring home assignment on Fridays? But that practice/scheme does not also work in some instances with children from very poor families. The question who will help them do their assignments if parents are too busy earning a living? Giving too much assignments to school children may also work against the learning capacity. On the other hand if we deal lightly with their academic workload and tasks they also become mediocre learners. So, they will question again the quality of education we have.
As a teacher myself I know the significance of giving week-end assignments to our student; to ensure that will come back to school well prepared for the following week. Other teachers give extra-assignments to their students to help them catch up with their deficiencies (particularly slow learners) in the class. Another reason for week-end assignments is to fill-up the gaps (of instruction) attributed by lack of school facilities and learning materials. Other reason, siguro dahil na rin sa katamaran ng ibang teachers (believe it or not).
Aminin na natin na maraming kakulangan ang DepEd (budgetary constraints), ganon din ang mga magaaral dahil na rin sa kakulangan ng kita ng mga magulang. Pinagkakasya lang ang mayroon tayo. Ika nga, what you see is what you get. Kung ano ang mayroon sa mga paaralan natin, iyon din ang kakayahan nakukuha ng ating mga magaaral sa mga pampublikong paaralan. But this is not a deterrent to excel academically. If there is a will there is a way.
May punto and DepEd, may punto rin ang mga guro. Mga magulang na lang at mga magaaral ang nakakaalam kung ano ang nakakabuti sa kanila. After all sila naman ang mga tunay na apektado dito.