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Other Philippine Educational Legislation

1. Act No. 74

This law was enacted on January 21, 1901 by the Philippine

Commission, and provided:

a. establishment of the Department of Public Instruction headed by

the General superintendent
b. the archipelago was divided into school divisions and districts for
effective management of the school system.
c. English was made as medium of instruction in all levels of
d. optional religious instructions in all schools (Section 16)
e. establishment of a Trade school in Manila (Philippine College of
Arts and Trade- PCAT now known as Technological University of the
Philippines), a school of Agriculture in Negros, a Normal school in
Manila (Philippine Normal School) (Section 18)
Philippine Normal School, however, was renamed Philippine
Normal College (PNC) by virtue of Republic Act No. 416 on June 18,
1949. And on December 26, 1991, the PNC was converted to
Philippine Normal University as provided by Republic Act No. 7168.

2. Act No. 2706

This was known as the Private School Law, enacted on March 10,
1917 by the Philippine Legislature, which made obligatory the
recognition and inspection of private schools and colleges by the
Secretary of Public Instruction so as to maintain a standard of
efficiency in all private schools and colleges in the country.
This law was amended by Commonwealth Act No. 180 passed on
November 13, 1936 which provided that:

The Secretary of Public Instruction was vested with power to

supervise, inspect and regulate said schools and colleges in order
to determine the efficiency of instruction given in the same.
And all private schools come under the supervision and regulation
of the Secretary of DPI, thus eliminating diploma mills and
substandard schools.

3. Commonwealth Act No. 1 (Amended by R.A. 9163)

Known as the National Defense Act passed by the Philippine

Assembly on December 21, 1935, which provided in Section 81 that:

Preparatory Military training shall be given with the youth in the

elementary grade school at the age of ten years and shall extend
through the remainder of his schooling into college or postsecondary education.

By virtue of Presidential Decree 1706, issued by the late President

Marcos on August 8, 1980, otherwise known as the National
Service Law, Commonwealth Act No. 1 was amended, and required
all citizens to render, civic welfare service, law enforcement service
and military service.

4. Commonwealth Act No. 80

This law created the Office of Adult Education on October 26, 1936,
so as to eliminate illiteracy and to give vocational and citizenship
training to adult citizens of the country.

5. Commonwealth Act No. 578

Enacted on June 8, 1940, conferred the status of persons in

authority upon the teachers, professors, and persons charged with
the supervision of public or duly recognized private schools,
colleges and universities.
This Act also provided a penalty of imprisonment ranging from six
months and one day to six years and a fine ranging from 500 to 1,
000 pesos upon any person found guilty of assault upon those
teaching personnel.

6. Commonwealth Act No. 586 (Repealed by R.A. 896)

This is known as Education Act of 1940. It was approved on August

7, 1940 by the Philippine Assembly.

The law provided for the following:

a. reduction of seven- year elementary course to six- year

elementary course.
b. fixing the school entrance age to seven.
c. national support of elementary education.
d. compulsory attendance in the primary grades for all children who
enroll in Grade I.
e. introduction of double- single session- one class in the morning
and another in the afternoon under one teacher to accommodate
more children.

7. Commonwealth Act No. 589

This law, approved on August 19, 1940, established a school ritual in

all public and private elementary and secondary schools in the

The ritual consists of solemn and patriotic ceremonies that include

the singing of the National Anthem and Patriotic Pledges.

8. Republic Act No. 139 (Repealed by R. A. 8047)

Enacted on June 14, 1947, and the Board of Textbooks. This law
provided that all public schools must only use books that are
approved by the Board for a period of six years from the date of
their adoption.
The private schools may use books of their choice, provided the
Board of Textbooks has no objections with those books.

9. Republic Act No. 896

Enacted on June 20, 1953 and known as the Elementary Education

Act of 1953, it repealed Commonwealth Act 586 and provided for the

a. restoration of Grade VII (but never implemented due to lack of

b. abolition of the double- single session and return to the former
practice of only one
c. class under one teacher in the primary and three teachers to two
classes or five teachers to three classes in the intermediate level
d. compulsory completion of the elementary grades

e. compulsory enrollment of children in the public schools upon

attaining seven years of age.

10. Republic Act No. 1124 (Repealed by R. A. 7722)

Approved on June 16, 1954, this law created the Board of National
Education charged with the duty of formulating general educational
policies and directing the educational interests of the nation.

However, this Board which was later renamed National Board of

Education (P.D. No. 1), was abolished bu virtue of the Creation of
the board of Higher Education as stipulated in Batas Pambansa Blg.
232. The Boards function is now assumed by the commission on
Higher Education or CHED by virtue of Republic Act No. 7722.

11. Republic Act No. 1265 (amended by R. A. 8491)

This law was approved on June 11, 1955, and provided that a daily
flag ceremony shall be compulsory in all educational institutions.
This includes the singing of the Philippine National Anthem.

12. Republic Act No. 1425

It was approved on June 12, 1956, it prescribed the inclusion in the

curricula of all schools, both public and private, from elementary
schools to the universities, the life, works and writings of Jose Rizal
especially the Noli Me Tangere and El Filibusterismo.

13. Republic Act No. 4670

Known as the Magna Carta for Public School Teachers. This was
approved on June 18, 1966 to promote and improve the social and
economic status of public school teachers, their living and working
conditions, their employment and career prospects.

It also provided the following:

Recruitment qualifications for teachers

Code of Professional Conduct for Teachers
Teaching hours- 6 hours of classroom teaching (maximum load)
Additional compensation- 25% of the regular remuneration
Health and injury benefits (thru the GSIS)
One year study leave (sabbatical leave) after seven years of
continuous teaching, the teacher should receive 60% of the monthly
One range salary increase upon retirement (basis computing the
retirement fee).
Freedom to form organizations.
14. Republic Act No. 1079

Approved on June 15, 1959, it provided that Civil Service eligibility

shall be permanent and shall have no time limit.

15. Republic Act No. 6655

Known as the Free Public Secondary Education Act of 1988, it was

approved on May 26, 1988 and provided for:

a. Free public secondary education to all qualified citizens and

promote quality education at all level.
b. No tuition or other fees shall be collected except fees related to
membership in the school community such I.D., student
organization and publication.
c. Non- payment of these shall not hinder a student from enrollment
or graduation.
d. Nationalization of all public secondary schools ( Section 7)
e. A student who fails in majority of his academic subjects for two
consecutive years could no longer avail of their program.