Education System in the Philippines

PrimaryPaaralang Elementarya (Elementary)1–66–126Elementary school covers the first six years of compulsory education (grades 1–6) informally divided into 3 years of primary level and 3 years of intermediate level.
SecondaryPaaralang Sekundarya (Secondary)7–1012–174Secondary education consists of four levels largely based on the American schooling system. DepEd (Department of Education) specifies a compulsory curriculum for all secondary schools, public and private.
SecondaryUpper Secondary (post 2018)11–122 
VocationalBokasyonal na Edukasyon at PagsasanayTechnical and vocational education is offered by government operated or private institutions often called colleges. Programs duration varies from a few weeks to 3 years. upon the graduation from most of the programs students may take TESDA (Technical Education and Skills Authority) examination to receive an appropriate certificate or diploma.
TertiaryUndergraduate Level13–164Higher Education is governed by the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) that was created on May 18, 1994 through the passage of Republic Act No. 7722, or the Higher Education Act of 1994. The creation of CHED was part of a broad agenda of reforms on the country’s education system outlined by the Congressional Commission on Education (EDCOM) in 1992. Part of the reforms was the trifocalization of the education sector into three governing bodies: the CHED for tertiary and graduate education, the Department of Education (DepEd) for basic education and the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) for technical-vocational and middle-level education.
TertiaryGraduate Level17–182 

Primary Education

Paaralang Elementarya or elementary education is the first part of the educational system, and it includes the first six years of compulsory education from grade 1 to 6, with an optional 7th grade offered by some schools. Major subjects include maths, science, English, Filipino and social sciences. Optional subjects include music, arts, physical education, and health. Private school students may select subjects from a wider curriculum including religious instruction in the dogma of their choice.
Until 2004, primary students traditionally sat for the National Elementary Achievement Test (NEAT) administered by the Department of Education, Culture and Sports (DECS). However, the scores obtained by students in the NEAT were not used as a basis for their admission into Secondary school.
During 2004, when DECS was officially converted into the Department of Education (DepEd), and as a result of reorganization, the NEAT was changed to National Achievement Test (NAT) by the Department of Education (DepEd). Students from both public and private elementary schools take this exam to measure a school's competency. As of 2006, only private schools have entrance examinations for Secondary school.

Middle Education

Middle school education is a part of Primary (or Elementary) Education

Secondary Education

Secondary education known as Paaralang Sekundarya comprises 4 grades that have changed little since the second world war. The curriculum is prescribed for both private and state schools. Core subjects are as follows:
  • Year 1 - Filipino 1, Algebra 1, Integrated Science, English 1, Phillipine History
  • Year 2 - Filipino 2, Algebra 2, Biology, English 2, Asian History
  • Year 3 - Filipino 3, Geometry, Chemistry, World History, Geography
  • Year 4 - Filipino 4, Calculus, Trigonometry, Physics, Literature, Economics
Minor optional subjects include Health, Music, Arts, Physical Education, Home Economics and Technology. Selected schools present additional subjects. Total secondary school numbers exceed 5.5 million.

Vocational Education

Accredited mainly private institutions known as colleges offer technical and vocational education. Programs offered vary in duration from a few weeks to two-year diplomas. On completion students may take centrally-administered examinations to obtain their diploma or certificate.
Vocational colleges don’t usually require an entrance examination, only a record of high school education and an enrollment fee.

Tertiary Education

Phillipine UniversityMost institutions of higher learning are regulated by the commission for higher education.

Colleges typically offer 1 or more specialized programs while universities must offer at least 8 different undergraduate degree programs in a wide array of subjects and at least 2 graduate programs.

Public universities are all non-sectarian and offer a wide-range of programs, with English as a medium of instruction. Public universities are government funded, with the largest, the University of the Philippines, receiving the substantial portion of the annual budget.

There are also a number of private tertiary institutions, sectarian or non-sectarian as well as for-profit or not-for-profit. Most private institutions are Catholic non-profit organizations.

Most universities offer 4 year degree programs with 2 semesters per year.

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