Cut-Off Age Policy for Kinder and Grade One Enrollees
April 19, 2018
DepEd Order No. 20, s. 2018
AMENDMENT TO DEPED ORDER NO. 47, S. 2016, OTHERWISE KNOWN AS THE “OMNIBUS POLICY ON KINDERGARTEN EDUCATION,”
CLARIFYING THAT THE CUT-OFF AGE POLICY IS APPLICABLE TO BOTH PUBLIC AND PRIVATE SCHOOLS AND PROVIDING FOR TRANSITORY PROVISIONS TO ACCOMMODATE KINDER AND GRADE ONE ENROLLEES FOR SY 2018-2019 AND SY 2019-2020 WHO MAY BE AFFECTED BY THIS POLICY, AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES
Bureau and Service Directors
Schools Division Superintendents
Public and Private Kindergarten and Elementary School Heads
All Others Concerned
1. Republic Act No. (RA) 10157, or the Kindergarten Education Act of 2012, declares that it shall be the policy of the State to provide equal opportunities for all children to avail of accessible mandatory and compulsory kindergarten education.
2. RA 10157 and RA 10533, or the Enhanced Basic Education Act of 2013, provide that kindergarten education shall mean “one year of preparatory education for children at least five (5) years old as a prerequisite for Grade 1.”
3. The Department of Education (DepEd) is vested, under RA 10157, with the authority to regulate the organization, operation and/or implementation of the kindergarten education program of both public and private schools. The DepEd is further charged with the function to oversee and supervise the organization, operation and implementation of the kindergarten education program and exercise authority over the operation of private kindergarten institutions.
4. The kindergarten curriculum is designed to respond to the holistic developmental needs of five (5) year old learners along socio-emotional, values, physical health and motor, aesthetic/creative, mathematics, understanding of the physical and natural environment, language, literacy, and communication. Moreover, the first quarter of the curriculum is designed to strengthen the learners’ preparation to meet the Kindergarten learning standards.
5. In view of the foregoing considerations, the Department hereby issues this Order clarifying the applicability of DepEd Order No. 47, s. 2016, or the Omnibus Policy on Kindergarten Education, to both public and private schools, thereby amending said Order to read as follows:
A. Item VI. 15.A of the enclosure to DepEd Order No. 47, s. 2016 is hereby amended to read as follows:
“VI. Enrolment Procedures
15. All Regional Directors, Schools Division Superintendents, and School Heads of both public and private schools are directed to accept children in accordance with the following guidelines:
A. Age qualification for Kindergarten learners in both public and private schools should be five (5) years old by June 1 of every calendar year. However, the school may consider learners entering Kindergarten who will turn five (5) years old by the end of August on the condition that the Philippine Early Childhood Development (ECD) Checklist must be administered to the learner prior to the start of the opening of the school year, to ensure that the learner is capable of meeting the expectations of the grade level. Parents may provide documentation and/or certification of the learner’s previous Early Childhood Education (ECE) experiences (i.e., preschool, day care, pre-Kindergarten) in addition to the results of the Philippine ECD Checklist.
For schools commencing their school year beyond June, the requirement that Kindergarten learners should be five (5) years old by June 1 and the extension period ending on August 31 shall be adjusted. For schools commencing their school year in July, Kindergarten learners should be five (5) years old by July 1 and the extension period shall be until September 30. For schools commencing their school year in August, Kindergarten learners should be five (5) years old by August 1 and the extension period shall be until October 31.”
B. To recognize the right of private schools to impose additional requirements that are consistent with existing laws, rules and regulations, a new Item VI.15.E is hereby added to the enclosure to DepEd Order No. 47, s. 2016, which shall read as follows:
“E. Private schools may impose special or additional admission requirements that are consistent with their right to operate as a private school as provided for under existing laws, rules and regulations. Such additional requirements may include, but not limited to the following:
i. passing of an entrance or qualifying examination;
ii. completing an additional pre-kindergarten program at an earlier age;
iii. passing other kindergarten readiness tools that such private schools may administer; and
iv. such other requirements that private schools may impose not contrary to existing laws, rules and regulations to maintain such private schools’ standards.”
C. To accommodate Kinder and Grade One enrollees in both public and private schools for School Year (SY) 2018-2019 and SY 2019-2020 who may be affected by this policy, the following transitory provisions are herein provided:
(1) For SY 2018-2019:
i. Learners who completed Kindergarten during SY 2017-2018 can enroll in Grade 1, provided that they turned five (5) years old within SY 2017-2018;
ii. Learners who will turn five (5) years old within SY 2018-2019 can be accepted to Kindergarten provided they pass the Philippine Early Childhood Development (ECD) checklist.
(2) For SY 2019-2020:
i. Learners who completed Kindergarten during SY 2018-2019 can enroll in Grade 1, provided that they turn five (5) years old within SY 2018-2019 when they complete Kindergarten;
ii. Incoming Kindergarten must strictly comply with the cut-off age policy stated in DO No. 47, s. 2016, as amended by this DepEd Order.
(3) For SY 2020-2021
Both incoming Kindergarten and Grade 1 learners shall strictly comply with the policy as stated under Item VI. 15.A of the enclosure to DepEd Order No. 47, s. 2016, as amended by this DepEd Order.
6. DepEd Order No. 47, s. 2016, Memorandum No. DM-CI-2017-00454 dated 11 December 2017 entitled Clarificatory Guidelines on the Provisions of DepEd Order No. 47, s. 2016 “Omnibus Policy on Kindergarten Education”, DepEd Order No. 3, s. 2018, and all other DepEd Orders, mles, regulations, issuances, which are inconsistent with this Order, are hereby repealed or modified accordingly.
7. These guidelines shall take effect immediately.
8. Immediate dissemination of and strict compliance with this Order is directed.
LEONOR MAGTOLIS BRIONES