In 2014, the Department of Education removed Philippine History from the curriculum of high school students. Now, a petition is calling for its return.
In 2017, education secretary Leonor Briones defended the move, saying "While Philippine History, as a subject, is no longer part of the junior high school curriculum, discussions of events in Philippine history are naturally integrated in several subjects."
So we checked the Minimum Learning Competencies (aka the DepEd's curriculum guide for all schools in the country).
In the curriculum guide for Araling Panlipunan (Social Studies), there is no mention of "Pilipinas," "Kasaysayan," or "Kasaysayan ng Pilipinas" in the learning competencies for Grade 7 to 10. Araling Panlipinan used to house the Philippine History subject.
In the AP curriculum, Grade 7 is dedicated to the study of Asian History, Grade 8 for World History, Grade 9 for Economics, and Grade 10 for Contemporary Issues.
On Change.org, tens of thousands of signatures have been collected calling for the return of Philippine History to the core subjects in high school.
"Philippine History is no longer taught as a dedicated course of critical thinking and analysis in both junior high school and senior high school," reads the petition.
"Its removal from the secondary education level obstructs the cohesion of study on Philippine History in basic education."
Currently, Philippine History is being taught to students in Grades 5 and 6. (Grades 3 and 4 students learn about geography, culture, civics, and the basics of government.) Students would only study Philippine History again if they take such a course in college seven years later.
"We firmly believe that a cohesive follow-up on the advancement on the study of Philippine History should be considered for each tranche in basic education: for elementary (middle childhood), junior high school (mid-adolescence), and senior high school (late adolescence)," reads the petition.
As of publishing, the petition has collected over 52,000 signatures.
This story originally appeared on Esquiremag.ph.
* Minor edits have been made by the Candymag.com editors.