DOF backs call for World Bank apology over 'misleading' education report

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jul 08 2021 03:17 PM | Updated as of Jul 08 2021 03:30 PM

MANILA - Following the release of a report citing the dismal status of the country's education sector, Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez on Thursday called on the World Bank to "adhere to highest ethical standards and observe responsible reporting."

In a statement, the Department of Finance said Dominguez' letter to the World Bank group president David Malpass pointed out that the study which was published over two years since the assessments “does not reflect current realities” and “has the effect of misleading the public and causing undue reputational risk to the Philippine education sector.” 

“The failure of Bank officials to follow the protocol of consulting with the DepEd prior to publication further illustrates the lack of professionalism which we come to expect from the World Bank and its staff," Dominguez said.

"Such a Report should be taken out from the Bank’s website as not to further mislead the public. We also believe that a public apology to the DepEd and the National Government (NG) is in order,” he added.

Moving forward, the World Bank should "observe responsible reporting and adhere to the highest standards of ethical and professional conduct,” he said.

Dominguez was referring to the “Improving Student Learning Outcomes and Well-Being in the Philippines: What Are International Assessments Telling Us? (Vol.2): Synthesis Report Presentation” published on June 29.

The study reported that about 80 percent of Filipino students fall below the minimum level of proficiency for their grade levels. 

As of this posting, the document remains posted on the World Bank's website. 

The Department of Education earlier demanded an apology from the lender.

The World Bank has extended support to the country's various sectors including education as well as in its fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. 

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