In the Philippines, poverty is one of the biggest reasons why many students fail to finish elementary and high school education.
Despite living under a bridge in Paco, Manila, Cienna Igano managed to complete her elementary education in flying colors. In fact, she will be graduating as the class valedictorian this year.
According to a report by 24 Oras, Igano was a consistent top one student from Grade 2 to Grade 6. Because of lack of resources, Igano wasn’t able to pass school projects at times.
Igano’s mother, Lotlot said her daughter goes to school even without an allowance.
“Magaling ‘yan talaga. Pagdating sa school, kahit walang baon, pumapasok talaga ‘yan. Umiiyak pa ‘yan ‘pag ‘di pumapasok.”
Determined to lead her family out of poverty, Igano believes that perseverance and guts would enable her to finish her studies.
Speaking to a 24 Oras reporter, she said: “Lakas lang po ng loob saka po pagtityagang mag-aral lang po nang mag-aral. Kapag wala kang pinag-aralan, mahirap makakuha ng trabaho.”
K to 12 Program to Start in the Philippines Next Year
Despite oppositions against the K to 12 program in the country, Malacañang announced that the academic program will be implemented next year in order for Filipino students to be globally competitive.
Under the K to 12 curriculum, it will be mandatory for students to undergo kindergarten, six years of elementary education, four years of junior high school, and additional two years of high school.
Earlier this week, Senator Antonio Trillanes IV urged President Benigno Aquino III and the Supreme Court to suspend its implementation.
Trillanes stressed that the country is not yet ready for the big change in education system. According to him, it will result to higher dropout rates and displacement of over 86,000 faculty members in private higher education.
“Nanawagan ako kay PNoy [at sa] Supreme Court para ipa-suspend ang K to 12 dahil hindi pa handa ang ang ating public education system at hindi talaga kaya ng mahihirap na magulang magpaaral pa ng dagdag na 2 years sa high school.”