After DepEd’s call to report module blunders, public reminded of ‘unpreparedness’ for distance learning

October 14, 2020 - 2:46 PM
Filipino students and siblings Shaina and Yuki Ugal do school work for an online class in their shanty home, amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Tondo, Manila, Philippines, October 6, 2020. (Reuters/Eloisa Lopez)

More than a week after classes resumed, students and parents have reported errors from learning modules prompting the Department of Education to launch a campaign encouraging the public to immediately report these so they can address them.

Classes for the primary and secondary levels have officially resumed last October 5 amid the still raging novel coronavirus pandemic.

Teachers and students adopted the new blended or distance learning method with printed, digital, radio and television materials instead of the conventional face-to-face classes.

However, parents, students and some concerned Filipinos noticed glaring errors in them which vary in spelling, grammar, mathematical equations and even in the instructions themselves.

A Reddit user posted a screenshot of a tweet that showed a photo of grade 8 MAPEH module where the English adjectives were ascribed as feminine and masculine despite the terms being neutral in the first place.

Wow, so this is still a thing. We’re far from "progressive". from Philippines

Following these reported errors, the DepEd launched a “bayanihan” campaign called “DepEd Error Watch” on October 13 wherein the public is encouraged to report mistakes in the learning materials they produced.

“Magtulungan tayo! I-report ang mga nakitang mali sa mga learning materials. Agarang aayusin ng DepEd Error Watch team ang mga ito,” the post from DepEd Tayo read.

In the graphics attached, the agency stated: “Magtulungan tayo para maiayos at mapabuti ang learning materials ng ating mga mag-aaral!”

The contact information where people can file their reports are also indicated.

Magtulungan tayo! I-report ang mga nakitang mali sa mga learning materials. Agarang aayusin ng DepEd Error Watch team ang mga ito.#DepEdErrorWatch #DepEdTayo

Posted by DepEd Tayo on Monday, October 12, 2020


In a radio interview, Education Undersecretary Diosdado San Antonio also admitted that not all of the self-learning modules underwent “quality assurance” review and even those that got screened are still prone to mistakes.

“Hindi lahat ng self-learning modules… ay dumaan sa aming quality assurance sa Central Office. At kahit po yung mga dumaan sa amin, may mga nasisilip po na hindi tama. Kasama po ‘yan sa mga hindi tamang pag-present ng lesson na kailangang bigyan ng pagsasaayos,” San Antonio said.

DepEd is currently looking at the possibility of hiring more proofreaders and even considered volunteers to address the problem.

Lack of preparedness

Amid the financial and health concerns that students have previously raised online, Education Secretary Leonor Briones was adamant that the Philippines was ready and prepared to resume classes before the year ends.

Some Filipinos largely blamed such hasty decisions and lack of proper planning for the string of questionable content in their learning materials.

Screenshot by Interaksyon

Sen. Risa Hontiveros likewise said that the DepEd should form its own technical working to develop the modules instead of relying on the teachers.

“Dapat bumuo ang DepEd ng isang technical working group na ang pangunahing task ay magdevelop at gumawa ng modules para masiguradong standardized ito at dumaan sa vetting at quality control. Ayon kasi sa ilan guro, bukod sa teaching assignment ay naatasan pa silang gumawa ng modules,” Hontiveros said on Facebook.

She also suggested on hiring retrenched private school teachers to serve as proofreaders and “relievers.”

“Dapat ding maghire ng mga retrenched private school teachers na pwedeng magsilbing proofreaders at reliever ng mga guro na huhugutin para maging member ng technical working group,” the senator said on Monday.

Indikasyon ito na hindi 100% ready at minadali ang pagbubukas ng klase. Sa ngayon, dapat bumuo ang DepEd ng isang…

Posted by Senator Risa Hontiveros on Monday, October 12, 2020


Some users also noted that DepEd should pay for the services of their proofreaders, even the volunteers.

Screenshot by Interaksyon

Other Facebook users, meanwhile, hoped that parents and students would be more considerate to teachers who were also assigned to develop the learning modules.

Screenshot by Interaksyon

Education Undersecretary San Antonio earlier bared that materials from private educational institutions are harder to regulate.

“Hindi pa rin namin completely naba-validate kung ‘yung mga pages ng mga self-learning modules na ‘yan ay gawa namin sa DepEd o nakita sa private sector counterpart… Wala po kaming kaalam-alam doon,” he said.