The order to integrate the technical and vocational strand in the Senior High School (SHS) curriculum is only "a short-term solution" to the problem of finding quality employment opportunities for people after high school and beyond, Kabataan party-list lawmaker Raoul Manuel said Thursday.

Manuel was referring to President Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos, Jr.’s directive for the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) to work closely with the Department of Education to harmonize technical vocational education and training with that of the senior high school curriculum.

“We want this policy to be clear. It appears that all SHS students would be required to take technical vocational subjects, regardless if they are taking up a different academic strand such as Business, Accountancy, Management (BAM); Humanities, Education, Social Sciences (HESS); and Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics (STEM). With this, they will earn a certification, on top of a SHS diploma. But, we think this is, again, a short-term solution,” Manuel said in a press conference.

“There will be a lot of SHS graduates with tech-voc skills, we will have more individuals with certification. But the question remains: anong tipo ng trabaho ang meron para sa kanila? Kasi kung wala din namang maayos na job creation program ang pamahalaan, iaasa sa foreign direct investment ang paglago ng ating ekonomiya...kahit may tech-voc skills sila, ‘yung mga low-quality na mga trabaho [pa rin ang nariyan],” Manuel added.

(What kind of jobs are available to them? Because if the government does not have a sound job creation in place and plans to just depend on foreign direct investment to improve the economy, they will only end up with low-quality jobs, even if they have tech-voc skills.) 

Low-quality jobs, Manuel said, result in low-paying contractual jobs, which would prompt individuals to seek jobs abroad for better pay.

“That is why we think this policy will only provide short-term benefits,” he added.

Just last year, the state-run Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS) reported that only 20%, or one in five senior high school graduates get employed.

TESDA has identified 80 Key Employment Generators such as tourism, agriculture, manufacturing and creative industries.

Main Menu

Secondary Menu