Mr. John Benjamin Balatbat, school principal, said that arrangements are ‘in full swing’ for the school’s smooth and efficient implementation of the co-education system in all grade levels. 

Mr. Balatbat said that teacher training, adjustment of the content of instructional materials, and the reviewing and updating of different school policies are the foci of ongoing preparations. Student readiness is being developed as well. 

“In addition, the co-curricular and extracurricular programs and activities will have to be more varied as clubs and organizations become mixed-gender,” he further added. 

For teachers’ training, preparations include revisiting the Department of Education’s Gender-Responsive Basic Education Policy.

Faculty members will have refresher webinars on the principles of gender equality, equity, sensitivity, non-discrimination, and human rights. These webinars would assist teachers in gaining a mutual understanding of politically correct terminologies to use.

Minor changes are also expected to happen in terms of the school’s curricular program.

“It will generally remain the same, [however] the TLE and MAPEH areas would have to revisit their course offerings to ensure that programs and classroom instruction are gender-responsive. Activities and tasks will be considered to cater both genders,” Mr. Balatbat said. 

Following an announcement posted on March 8, 2021, school president Br. Allan de Castro, FMS stated in a circular dated March 24, 2021 that the shift to co-ed system will prepare students academically, socially, and emotionally for higher education and life demands through an environment that is reflective and responsive to real-life situations.

The shifting to a co-education learning system was planned several years ago. Preparations for the shifting were done such as orientation meetings, series of planning sessions, and the formation of different committees. Marcus Timotii Sison // Photo by Ericka Del Mundo

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