MANILA, Philippines – Senator Edgardo J. Angara has deplored the steady decline in the literacy rates as well as the quality of basic education in the country.
Angara, chairman of the Senate Committee on Education, Arts, and Culture, lamented this in his message at the opening program of the 2010 National Literacy Conference and Awards held by the Department of Education (DepEd) at Teachers’ Camp in Baguio City.
He attributed the country's deteriorating literacy condition largely to “underinvestment and low priority for literacy advancement of the youth and uneducated adults.”
This alarming situation, Angara said, calls for a massive effort to prove the nation's education system which can be achieved “through the collaborative efforts of all stakeholders in education, private sector and legislation.”
Meanwhile, Rep. Salvador H. Escudero, chairperson of the House Committee on Basic Education, considered literacy as the most important basic tool of the knowledge economy in all corners of the world today.
In his message to participants to the conference, which focuses on the theme “Community Development: A Shared Responsibility to Society through Functional Literacy,” Escudero expressed the need to integrate literacy training into community development programs in order to remove the social, cultural, linguistics, and economic barriers that prevent the poor and the ethnic minorities from gaining sustainable access to quality education.”
In the same gathering, Education Secretary Bro. Armin A. Luistro stressed that an educated citizenry is the building block of a progressive land stable economy.
Educating the Filipino youth and adults “is a responsibility not solely of DepEd but also a noble duty that must be shared by the community, Luistro said, adding that after all it’s “the whole country which benefits from a learned citizenry."
Tony Pe Rimando, Manila Bulletin