DepED ORDER 37 s. 2011
1. Batas Pambansa Blg. 232 or the Education Act of 1982 defines Elementary Education as the first stage of compulsory, formal education and usually corresponding to six or seven grades, including preschool. Likewise, Section 4(b) of Republic Act No. 9155 or the "Governance of Basic Education Act of 2001" defines Basic Education as the education intended to meet basic learning needs, which lay the foundation on which subsequent learning can be based. It encompasses early childhood, elementary and secondary education as well as alternative learning systems for out-of-school youth and adult learners and includes education for those with special needs.
3. Achieving the universal Kindergarten Education will prepare physically, socially, emotionally and mentally all the five (5)-year old children for formal schooling; hence, increasing the children's chance of surviving and completing formal schooling, reducing dropout incidence, and ensuring better school performance.
4. The Department of Education (DepEd), in collaboration with the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and the Department of Health (DOH), issues the policies and guidelines for the implementation of the universal Kindergarten Education:
- Universal Kindergarten Education
The Universal Kindergarten Education shall be implemented starting School Year 2011-2012 to ensure access to and quality education for all the five (5)-year old children. Its implementation aims to:
- expand the coverage of Kindergarten education to reach 5-year old children in the poorest households; and
- improve their readiness and foundational skills to be ready for the primary grades.
- Enrolment Requirements
- Only children who are five (5) years old by June and until October 2011 shall be eligible for enrolment in Kindergarten classes; and
- A Certificate of Live Birth issued by the Local Registry Office/Baptismal Certificate shall be required for submission until December 2011.
- Kindergarten Education Programs
The two (2) types of Kindergarten Education Programs which shall be implemented for ten (10) months from June 2011 to March 2012 are the following: (a) Kindergarten Regular Program (KRP); and (b) Kindergarten Volunteer Program ((KVP).
- The Kindergarten Regular Program (KRP) is provided for the regular children as well as the children with special needs; the gifted and those with disabilities. This program is handled by permanent teachers.To maximize the utilization of permanent teachers handling these classes, the school heads shall ensure that each teacher handles two (2) classes with 25-30 pupils per class.
- Kindergarten Volunteer Program (KVP) shall be organized to enroll five (5)-year old children who cannot be accommodated in the KRP.
- The KVP classes shall be handled by volunteers who shall meet the following requirements:
- Bachelor's degree holder in education or education related courses;
- Preferably resident of the community where the school is located; and
- Registered as volunteer in the school and/or division office.
- A volunteer shall be allowed to handle only one (1) class of at least 11 to 30 pupils and shall be paid an allowance of P3,000.00 per month.
- In cases when the enrolment is 10 or less or in multi-grade (MG) schools, the volunteer who handles the class shall be paid an allowance of P1,500.00 per month.
- Day Care workers who meet the qualification requirements can volunteer their services after their classes for the 3 to 4 years old children. They shall be paid an allowance of P3,000.00 per month for handling 11 to 30 pupils or P1,500.00 for 10 or less pupils.
- Curriculum and Orientation cum Training
- Starting this school year, an integrated curriculum, thematic in approach shall be used in all Kindergarten classes.
- Teachers and volunteers will be provided with the National Kindergarten Curriculum Guide (NKCG) which contains performance standards and daily learning activities covering ten (10) months.
- They shall be provided orientation cum training by the designated Regional and Division Kindergarten trainers.
- Schools without Kindergarten classrooms shall utilize available classrooms, library, science laboratory, home economics building, resource center, and other available spaces.
- In cases where classrooms and other spaces are not available within the school premises, school heads are urged to link with the Local Government Units (LGUs) for the use of existing day care centers and/or barangay halls.
- Contingency Measures
- In extreme cases, where there are no volunteers for the Kindergarten classes, Grade 1 teachers shall be utilized without jeopardizing their functions as Grade 1 teachers. Their incentive pay follows the number of pupils indicated in c.2b and c.2c.
- In cases where enrolment is 30-49 and organization of another class is not possible, the services of a Kindergarten Aide shall be tapped. The Aide can be a mother who is at least a high school graduate or an out-of-school college student in education and related courses and shall be paid an allowance of P1,500.00 a month.
- All 5-year old children who shall not be able to avail of the ten-month Kindergarten program shall be enrolled in Kindergarten Summer Program. Guidelines shall be issued on this matter.
- Support to Kindergarten Education Programs
- The Bureau of Elementary Education (BEE) shall procure only the Basic Instructional Package duly approved by the evaluation team of the Instructional Materials Council Secretariat (IMCS) consisting of the following:
- One (1) set of manipulative toys consisting of table blocks, tangrams, pictures, dominoes, counting frame, lacing beads, wooden puzzles (shapes, transportation, numbers, fruits, and parts of the body), etc.
- Thirty (30) titles story books and ten (10) titles big books approved by the IMCS evaluation committee; and
- 'Twenty (20) titles songs, poems, stories in CD or in DVD with player and teachers guide.
- The Budget and Finance Office shall download funds for the construction of standard classrooms, training of trainers, teachers, volunteers, aides and allowance for volunteers, incentives for teachers and other authorized expenses.
- Monitoring and Reporting
- Within three (3) months from the issuance of this Order, all DepEd regional and field offices shall submit the following reports to the Curriculum Development Division (CDD), BEE, DepEd Central Office:
- Report on the organized classes duly verified true and correct by the school head and the Schools Division/City Superintendent; and
- Report on the status of classrooms utilized.
- The sample forms relative to these reports shall be issued in a separate Memorandum.
6. Immediate dissemination of and strict compliance with this Order is directed.