House Bill 223 seeks to integrate 9 units of Filipino subjects and 3 units of Philippine Literature subjects in the college-level curriculum. All students in public and private tertiary schools would be required to take this if passed.
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Solons explained that though Filipino subjects are included in the junior and senior high school, it is not enough. As Memorandum 20 series of 2013 of the Commission on Higher Education (CHEd) has excluded Filipino, Panitikan (Philippine Literature) and the Philippine Constitution as core subjects in tertiary education.
The lawmakers stressed the need for the government, under the 1987 Constitution, to help enrich and promote the Filipino language as the national language.
“Wala tayong maiaambag sa edukasyong pangkultura ng mga mamamayan ng daigdig kung hindi lilinangin ang ating sariling wika, kultura at identidad,” the lawmakers said in the bill’s explanatory note.
HB 223 was filed by ACT Teachers party-list Rep. France Castro in July 2019. He led the filing together with Bayan Muna Representatives Carlos Isagani Zarate, Ferdinand Gaite and Eufemia Cullamat; Gabriela Women’s Party Rep. Arlene Brosas; and Kabataan party-list Rep. Sarah Jane Elago.