Need to reintroduce GMRC subjects cited

A MINDANAO House leader on Monday urged the Department of Education (DepEd) to now prepare for the reintroduction of subjects on good manners and right conduct (GMRC) and values education in schools.

Cagayan de Oro City Rep. Rufus Rodriguez made the appeal days after President Duterte signed Republic Act (RA) No. 11476, or the GMRC and Values Education Act.

“It is no longer possible to implement the law this coming school year because the DepEd will still have to issue implementing rules and regulations, but we have to reintroduce those subjects as soon as possible,” said Rodriguez, the chairman of the House committee on constitutional amendments.

Rodriguez said the DepEd would also have to recruit and train qualified teachers.

“There is a need to return to our curriculum for Grades 1 to 6 the subject Good Manners and Right Conduct and to Grades 7 to 12 the subject Values Education,” he said.

He hailed the signing of RA 11476, saying, “It is a timely piece of legislation for the present day.”

The lawmaker said in this age of the Internet and modern computer devices and gadgets, young people tend to forget or ignore good conduct, manners and values.

“The law is in consonance with the goal of improving our primary education system comprehensively. It is high-time we emphasize that quality education does not only entail strength in math, science, and other core subjects; rather, it includes the moral, physical, and mental well-being of our youth,” he said.

He said he and other lawmakers “look forward to a dynamic implementation of the law, which includes teacher-parent collaborative learning activities, community immersion activities, and other self-actualization tools for our students.”

“Recent research and modern-day education methods call for more experiential learning with our students, especially in building the character and foundation of the next generation. We hope the law and its implementation take us a step further in the betterment of our holistic education system,” he added.

Rodriguez pointed out that the implementation of the law poses a new challenge to the DepEd, in addition to those the agency faces in its new-normal blended learning program that would initially do away with face-to-face classroom sessions.

“But I am confident that the agency, under the able leadership of Secretary Leonor Briones, is up to those challenges,” he said.