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SC asked to reconsider removal of Filipino as core subject in college

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The Supreme Court (SC) has been asked to reverse its decision upholding the order of the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) to remove Filipino, Panitikan and the Constitution as part of cores subjects in college.

Alyansa ng Mga Tagapagtanggol ng Wikang Filipino (Tanggol Wika) made this appeal in a letter it sent to the SC on Monday (June 10).

“We hope to still move the heavens and the earth to stop this imminent cultural genocide, the impending murder of our national language and local literature,” read the letter from Tanggol Wika who noted that it was advised by its lawyers it can no longer file a motion for reconsideration.

Tanggol Wika pointed out it is “a travesty to allow CHED to make a regressive on language policy, when the Constitution mandates forward action, continuous progress into the process of cultivating the national language.”

The group lamented that even before the SC released its final ruling over the issue last March a number of universities have already implemented the CHED’s directive under Memorandum Order (CMO) No. 20.

“Eventually, if the Supreme Court fails to reverse its decision, Filipino and Panitikan will not only be killed as mandatory subjects in college, but Filipino will also be murdered as an effective medium of instruction, directly contravening the Constitution’s well-defined mandate for Filipino as medium of instruction at all levels of education,” read the letter.

In its ruling, the SC pointed out that CMO No. 20 did not violate the constitutional provision that the three subjects should be included in the curriculum of all levels.

“While the Constitution mandates the inclusion of the study of the Constitution, Filipino and Panitikan in the curriculum of educational institutions, the mandate was general and did not specify the educational level in which it must be taught,” explained the SC.

The high court said CMO 20 “merely transferred these subjects as part of the curriculum of primary and secondary education.”

It added that “CMO 20 only provides for the minimum standards for the general education component of all degree programs.”

“It does not limit the academic freedom of universities and colleges to require additional courses in Filipino, Panitikan and the Constitution in their respective curricula,” the high court indicated.

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