Kindergarten now mandatory for public school children

By Willard Cheng, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Feb 27 2012 03:04 PM | Updated as of Feb 28 2012 05:51 PM

MANILA, Philippines - Attending kindergarten for public school children is now a prerequisite for Grade 1 following the passage of Republic Act 10157 or the Kindergarten Education Act.
The law provides for free one-year public kindergarten education for children at least five years old starting school year 2012-2013.
“Ibig-sabihin, lahat ng mga mag-aaral sa mga pampublikong paaralan, simula sa darating na School Year 2012-2013, ay kailangan nang dumaan sa preschool bilang panimula ng kanilang pormal na pag-aaral,” President Aquino said during the formal presentation of the law in Malacañang. 
The law was signed by the President last January 20.
“Kindergarten education is hereby institutionalized as part of basic education and for school year 2011-2012 shall be implemented partially, and thereafter, it shall be made mandatory and compulsory for entrance to Grade 1,” the law states.
“The DepEd shall immediately include in the program of the Department the operationalization of the free, mandatory and compulsory public kindergarten education, the initial funding of which shall be charged against the current appropriations for kindergarten education of the DepEd. Thereafter, such sums which shall be necessary for the continued implementation of the free public kindergarten education program shall be charged to the General Fund and included in the annual General Appropriations Act.”
Aquino said that the law will help strengthen the basic education program and achieve 100 percent primary education by 2015 as one of the Millennium Development Goals.