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Keep graduation ceremonies simple, school officials told


School officials in all public schools in the country were reminded by the Department of Education (DepEd) yesterday to keep the graduation rites as austere as possible.

“Secretary Leonor Magtolis-Briones has reiterated to keep the graduation rites simple. No more wearing of toga since it’s for college and it is not required since it was sort of a practice by several schools,” DepEd Undersecretary Jesus Mateo said.
Mateo also said that schools should not require glamorous attires or extraordinary venues for the conduct of the ceremonies.
The dresses and rites should be simple and not extravagant and should be memorable, according to Mateo, and added that school uniform will do.
The Education department also warned against collecting graduation fees or “contributions” for the rites.
“Definitely, no collection of contribution because the reality in public schools the graduation fees are already incorporated in the MOOE (Maintenance and Other Operating Expenses) the graduation fees,” Mateo said.
He, however, said that the education department has no budget for the annual yearbook.
“The annual yearbook is voluntary only except if it is needed there should an agreement with the parents and teachers,” Mateo said.
This year’s graduation rites are scheduled any day but not later than April 2.
The Education department, however, said that the conduct of graduation rites in schools near Mt. Mayon will be delayed.
“Graduation in schools that are affected will be delayed the four elementary schools maybe April 10 and the secondary schools will be April 13,” Mateo said.
Meanwhile, the DepEd also said that only children aged six or will turn six before August 31, 2018, with a Learner’s Reference Number (LRN) from completing Kindergarten, may enroll in Grade 1 under the new scheme.
DepEd Undersecretry Tonisito Umali issued the clarification after parents with children who completed Kindergarten expressed concern that they would not be able to enter Grade 1 this coming school year.
Umali said the scheme was based on a study and it can be validated whether the age that they are talking about is the same age not only in the Philippines, but in other countries.
The changes in the minimum age for Grade 1 was based on the stage of development for that age group and how well they will be able to absorb the modules of that grade level.
In the event children who will miss the cut-off date by a few days their parents can contact DepEd for further information.
Umali said that DepEd has supervisory power over private schools and it is them who are covered by the new cutoff age for the Grade 1 level.
The age requirement was needed since some private schools fail to abide by the cut-off date for kindergarten as prescribed by Republic Act 10157 or the Universal Kindergarten Bill.


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