Two party-list lawmakers on Tuesday denounced the so-called “sagot-for-sale” or answers-for-sale scheme on learning modules.
Deputy Speaker Eddie Villanueva and Rep. Domingo Rivera of the Citizens Battle Against Corruption party-list said if true, it was “disappointing” that parents were paying for people to answer the learning modules of their children.
“It’s cheating. Tolerating the said scheme will not be beneficial to students in the long run,” Villanueva, deputy speaker for Good Governance and Moral Uprightness, said.
“With this kind of practice, we are just compromising the learning and development of students who would bear the burden of its aftereffects.”
Villanueva acknowledged that the online learning set-up compounded the difficulties for families in community quarantine. But he said this should not be a reason for parents to take on as their children would be left as victims.
Rivera appealed to the parents: “Huwag nating gawin ito para sa ating mga anak. The fee you’ll be allotting for this scheme may be used to many other necessities as we all struggle to survive during this pandemic.”
The anti-corruption group also called the attention of the Education Department on the assessment of student’s learning. According to DepEd, 99.13 percent of more than 14 million public school learners passed the first quarter of the school year. This data does not include yet the National Capital Region, Region 7 and Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.
“We are not underestimating the capability of students, but we want to have a better understanding on how learners are being evaluated as they attend their classes under a distance learning set-up. With this, we can get away from tolerating this gibberish practice,” Villanueva said.
Meanwhile, instead of simply relying on an area’s quarantine classification in choosing sites for the pilot tests of limited localized face-to-face classes, Senator Sherwin Gatchalian said the Department of Education should provide science-based criteria or epidemiological measurements such as the number of active COVID-19 cases, positivity rates, and transmission rates.
“It’s not only the quarantine restrictions, but you have to go much more granular in terms of location and the matrices that should be used in terms of assessing risk,” said Gatchalian.