- The CHR called out DepEd for a module that allegedly discourages students to participate in peaceful protest
- They said “love of country does not mean “blind obedience to the government”
- The agency reminded that every Filipino has the right to freedom of speech, of expression and to peaceably assemble
The Commission on Human Rights (CHR) expressed their concern over a module allegedly from the Department of Education (DepEd) that discouraged students from joining peaceful protests.
The CHR noted that love of country does not mean “blind obedience to the government.”
The CHR referred to an activity in the DepEd Module on Media and Information Literacy for Grade 12 students. One of the questions asked, “If given the chance, will you join this rally ? Why or why not?”
The answer, as written on the module, was, “No, because the government has really doing their best for all the Filipino people and their constituents.”
On Facebook, David Waya, a member of Rise for Education-Cagayan Valley, posted a photo of the module and captioned, “Anuna DepED? Anong nangyari sa grammar at pagbibigay ng answer against exercising democratic right?”
CHR spokesperson and lawyer Jacqueline Ann de Guia said it is important for students to practice critical thinking when it comes to social issues.
“We are concerned on such module on Media and Information Literacy allegedly coming from the DepEd. While respect for the law is a good value to teach, it is equally important to develop among our children critical thinking, especially when it comes to issues that affect us, not only personally, but as well as those national in scope,” she said.
“Love for one’s country is not limited to mere obedience, but can also be manifested through collectively tackling issues of our communities and the country under the guidance of rights entitled to us and protected by the Constitution, including the people’s right to freedom of speech, of expression, the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and petition the government for redress of grievances,” De Guia added, referring to Article 3, Section 4 of the Philippine Constitution.