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Modular Madness

I didn’t want to talk about this because we’re all supposed to be as one community, as one nation rallying around to make it work, and not to make it worse.

After DOH and Philhealth, I guess now, it’s DepEd’s turn to be strapped on a stake, so people could throw tomatoes at it. That seems to be the latest flavor of the month, the trending idea of fun to poke ridicule on the state’s effort on education in the middle of epidemic. Come on, cut DepEd some slack. Well, for that matter, let’s cut everyone else of us some slack. I guess, we sort of expected Chinese aggression, a stray North Korean nuclear warhead, another Yolanda-type typhoon or The Big One Marikina faultline earthquake, but none of us presumably ever imagined being caught in a crisis in which we have to cover our faces and stay away from each other. We always thought that the solution to every problem is to huddle up and have a group hug. What I’m saying is this is all alien to all of us, so why is everyone acting like authorities should easily be experts on this?

If all Filipino families with school children had at least one computer or smart phone and reliable Internet connection, then all of them would be in online classes and no parent would have chosen modular learning modality and no child would be taking classes with stapled pieces of paper. So if you think about it the learning module is actually a testament of the Filipino’s underdevelopment. While other nations could effortlessly implement online education, we’re so stuck behind and down the scale that very few could access computers and much less the Internet. Now, how do we reconcile that with the Filipino’s fascination and frenzy with Facebook? What gives that when it came to the topic of education, we hunch down to the hard copy? What happened to the voluminous voracious video gamers among the Filipino youth? Didn’t they access computer and the Internet on recreation? How come they can’t do the same on education?

How did we get here anyway? Yeah, I know Covid caused all this. But what I mean is at the onset, after the easing up of the quarantine restrictions, DepEd proposed a variety of options for learning modalities; and modules was just one among them (not the major thrust of the program). Around May, DeppEd was expecting that some pupils would have online classes, some would go modular, some would be brave or complacent enough to go face to face, some would go listen to the radio or watch TV, and some would have a blend of two or more of those. While proposals on learning deliveries were on their planning stages, parents swarmed on the side of modular; and the President had to rock the boat a little bit more with completely prohibiting face to face classes until the vaccine comes out. There were suggestions on utilization of radio and TV, but I don’t really see how they could efficiently do that; not unless DepEd pays for block time. With all that confusion and indecision, DepEd had to rush writing the modules, which brings me to the question on why they have to. Has not there been K to 12 learner’s materials in use for years now? Are they not as good as modules?

Now, everyone’s a proofreader expecting infallibility from the learning materials. Let’s consider a few things. There’s such a thing as context. Surrounding issues would be clarified if we had taken into consideration the preceding pages and not just one page selected to be posted on Facebook. When a page has an instruction that goes, draw 875 stars, maybe critics would have considered that before that statement, parameters were set that one star drawing would be equal to 100 stars, so what’s the fuss about drawing 8 and three quarters of stars. Should we be blind to culture and history that includes cockfighting? It’s part of Filipino customs and traditions. It becomes a gamble, only when you bet money or your position as House Speaker) on it. Don’t Spaniards portray bullfighting with pride? Don’t the Japanese revere sumo as ritually sacred? But then again, I guess there are really some erroneous pages which deserve to be torn.

If a fellow shopper enters the wrong door or stands on the wrong line, on those for senior citizens, when the shopper looks 25, do you take his/her picture and post his picture of standing on the wrong line on Facebook? Do you complain to the manager that this shopper is standing on the wrong line? Is it not so much easier and more civilized to simply call that shopper’s attention and tell him/her that he/she’s on the wrong queue? So, when you, parent or guardian sees something off with the module, is it not the proper thing to do to talk to its source rather than bang the bells about it?

But I guess some people just enjoy condemnation, rather than constructive cooperation.

“But all things should be done decently and in order” 1 Corinthians 14:40

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