Senator Win Gatchalian called on the Department of Education (DepEd) to work with the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) to strengthen job placement mechanisms for senior high school graduates who wish to enter the workforce immediately upon graduation.
This month, an estimated 1.4 million students will become the first set of Grade 12 graduates under the K-12 program established by the Enhanced Basic Education Act of 2013 (Republic Act No. 10533).
DepEd and DOLE need to be proactive in matching graduates with the right employers by institutionalizing job placement mechanisms.
“Since this is the first batch of K-12 graduates, prospective employers aren’t exactly sure about what to expect with regard to their skills and competencies. DepEd and DOLE need to be proactive in matching graduates with the right employers by institutionalizing job placement mechanisms that are responsive to the prevailing realities of the job market,” Gatchalian said.
The legislator, who serves as vice-chairman of the Senate Committee on Education, Arts and Culture, stressed that it will be critical for the government to devote significant resources to marketing the employability of K-12 grads.
“One of the main selling points of the K-12 program was its ability to produce better graduates who would be ready to enter the workforce from day one. DepEd and DOLE need to hit this point home with the business community by disseminating information on the competencies of K-12 grads, and by facilitating nationwide job fairs to showcase these competencies,” the lawmaker said.
“Most importantly, the government needs to keep its promise to the K-12 grads. The young Filipinos graduating this March were told that the extra two years of time and money they would have to invest to earn a senior high school diploma would help them build a brighter future for themselves and their families. These job placement strategies will help turn that promise into a reality,” the senator from Valenzuela added.