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  • Why Moms Choose Public Schools: 'Bawas Gastos Lalo Na Walang Kasiguraduhan Ang Mga Bagay'

    Many say it's no longer practical especially since many have lost their jobs due to the pandemic.
    by Kitty Elicay .
  • PHOTO BY Jerome Ascano

     

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     In a recent report, the Department of Education (DepEd) said that more than 200,000 students transferred from private to public school for the incoming academic year. Meanwhile, about 9 million students have yet to enroll out of the expected 27.7 million students.

     On our Facebook community, Smart Parenting Village, choosing between private and public schools has become a hot topic among parents. With schools choosing the online route and integrating blended learning and distance learning in their curriculum, many think that this has somewhat leveled the playing field between private and public education.

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    Why parents choose public schools

     If you still can’t choose, here are some reasons from Pinoy parents on why they chose to enroll their children in public or private schools:

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    Cost cutting

     Some parents said that they have shifted out of private schools because tuition has remained the same (or even increased) though kids aren’t attending on-site classes. For most parents, this is the top reason, especially since not all of them have a stable source of income due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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    “Bawas gastos muna lalo na ngayon na walang kasiguraduhan ang mga bagay-bagay,” said one mom. “Ipon time muna since walang tuition. Walang expenses sa books at school service. Hihinga muna ang bulsa sa gastos.”

    “Same pa rin ang tuition ng kids ko sa private — Php60k wala pa dun [ang] books or manuals na gagamitin. Tapos nasa bahay lang sila the whole time, aircon, pakain, turo sa akin, haha!” mom Kristine Soledad shares.

    She adds, “Try lang naman kung [effective] or not. Kaysa puro gadgets na lang rin sila sa bahay. Basta andito lang naman ako to support them.”

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    Parents will become teachers

     For another mom, one of the deciding factors why she and her husband opted for public schooling is because kids will still rely on their parents to teach or help them even while they are doing online learning. “Parang sayang pambayad sa tuition at pambili ng books gayong for online classes, tayo ring parents ang magtuturo sa kanila with the guidance of teachers,” she shares. “Kung naka-modular naman, lahat tayong parents ang magiging teacher nila sa bahay.”

    She adds, “Hindi ko alam kung makakapag-concentrate ang mga bata ‘pag nasa bahay. Pero sa public, libre ang tuition, libre ang modules na sasagutan ng mga bata. Kung sakaling ‘di man sila tumutok o making sakin, walang panghihinayang na mararamdaman kasi walang tuition at librong binayaran.”

    Public schools are adjusting to the need of students

     Mom Zelma Lazaro, whose mother is a public school teacher, shared that schools have a “concrete action plan” for their students. “’Di nila pinipilit na mag-laptop or computer ang mga bata,” she explains. “Kasi magpapadala pa rin sila ng modules sa bawat bata para aralin at sagutan na magsisilbing attendance at dun ibabase ang grades nila. Wala rin pong bayad ang modules.”

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    However, she did say that schools are most likely still fixing their schedules. In the public school where her mom works, Zelma explains that they are looking for options so kids won’t be required to have video calls every day. “Gumagawa sila ngayon ng paraan para kahit isang oras or dalawang oras lang [ang] bata at ‘di every day ang video call or Zoom. Wala na ‘yung ibang subjects, core subjects na lang matitira kaya mas maikli ang video time,” she says.

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    Why parents choose private schools

    There are also parents who chose to stay in private schools for various reasons. Here are some of them.

    Children won’t have to go through an adjustment period

    For mom Seychell Concon, one of the deciding factors is because she wanted her child to remain comfortable and not have to go through an adjustment period. “Hindi maninibago anak ko kapag same teacher at same classmate ang nakikita niya. Alam na pati pasunurin ni teacher ang anak ko,” she explains.

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    Because she and her husband are both working, Seychell also admits they lack the time for a whole day discussion, “unlike sa private may everyday discussion ni teacher, [so] follow-up na lang ang gagawin namin,” she says. “Good thing hindi mataas ang tuition fee ng anak ko, tulong na rin sa mga teachers ngayong pandemic.”

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    Trust in the school and the teachers

    For mom Hanne Reyes, the decision to stick to a private school was easy because her incoming fourth grader was already familiar with online learning — the school she goes to has been offering online modules, assignments, and projects since Grade 1.

    “Too much [has] changed already. I want to give my kid a bit of normalcy especially since hindi naman nga totally new to them ito,” she explains.

    She adds that she is happy how the school is coping with the ‘new normal.’ “I still want a teacher’s point of view—they will still check the modules which parents will submit weekly to the school, they will be available daily for consultations, they will have two hours of synchronous classes online, and activities such as mass, etc. The relationships my kid has fostered in the past four years from kinder ‘til now won’t be severed totally.”

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    Looking for learn-at-home options and wondering about tuition fee? Head to Smart Parenting Classroom now! 

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