Education crisis a drag to the economy

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    Advocacy group Philippine Business for Education (PBEd) yesterday urged government to address the education crisis as this will drag the economy and worsen poverty.

    The group made this statement yesterday after a series of international assessments ranked Filipino students among the lowest in the world in terms of science, mathematics and reading competency.

    PBEd warned the protracted school closure and uncertainty in the safe and equitable reopening of schools will further worsen the country’s learning losses, especially for the 2.7 million unenrolled K-12 students this school year.

    Lito Tayag, country managing director of Accenture Philippines, said the learning crisis threatens the competitiveness of the Philippine economy when workers are not able to meet the demands of industry in terms of skills required to carry out their jobs.

    Former Social Security System President and Chief Executive Officer Corazon dela Paz-Bernardo, meanwhile, added that the education crisis can lead to and exacerbate poverty in the Philippines, as families with members who lack proper education miss out on crucial opportunities.

    PBEd chair Ramon del Rosario Jr. said the country’s leaders to make education a top priority as he outlined five urgent recommendations to reform the education system in the country.

    These include addressing stunting and malnutrition among school children through the implementation of the Philippine Plan of Action for Nutrition; higher budget for education; an establishment of an autonomous assessment agency; the creation of a National Teacher Education Scholarship program; and a stronger implementation of mother tongue-based multilingual education.