One of the key features of the K+12 Basic Education Reform of the Department of Education (DepEd) is the inclusion of two more years of specialized secondary education or Senior High School (SHS). Set to begin with the first batch of Grade 11 students in school year 2016-2017, SHS will enable students to prepare for the track that suits their interests and emerging competencies and will serve as gateway for specialization in higher education or paid work post technical vocational qualifications.
First Balfour, through its newest corporate sustainability initiative dubbed as Project K12, partners with Parañaque National High School (PNHS) and Dr. Arcadio Santos National High School (DASNHS). The company intends to support the technical-vocational track in SHS, specifically the Electrical Installation and Maintenance course, being offered in these institutions. “Wherever we work, whether it’s in Mindanao or Visayas or in Metro Manila, we always make an effort that any kind of contribution that we do in the community is through the public schools. This K+12 is a major structural change and when this came along, we took pains to really study the areas where we can contribute,” shares President and COO Anthony Fernandez.
Addressing the perennial mismatch between the demands of the industry and the graduates of the academe, DepEd sees the SHS to produce hirable graduates equipped with technical-vocational skills that industries need. Eventually, promising SHS graduates from the Electrical Installation and Maintenance course in PNHS and DASNHS will be employed by the company and its partner sponsors upon passing an assessment from TESDA.