November 14, 1997 – DO 96, s. 1997 – Policies and Guidelines in the Organization and Operation of Multigrade (MG) Classes

November 14, 1997
DO 96, s. 1997
Policies and Guidelines in the Organization and Operation of Multigrade (MG) Classes

To: Undersecretaries and Assistant Secretaries
Regional, Bureau, Center, Service Directors
Schools Division Superintendents

  1. Pursuant to the provisions of the Constitution that the State shall protect and promote the rights of all citizens to quality education at all levels and take appropriate steps to make education accessible to all, it is a declared policy of the DECS to build a school in school-less barangays where enrolment and population growth trends warrant the establishment of new schools and to organize multigrade classes to offer the complete six (6) grade levels to children in the remote barangays.
  2. In support of this program, the following policies and guidelines in the organization and
    operation of Multigrade Classes in the country are being issued:

    1. Definition. A multigrade class is defined as a class of 2 or more grades under one teacher in a complete or incomplete elementary school.
    2. Organization of Multigrade Classes
      Regional Directors and Schools Division Superintendents shall organize Multigrade classes to provide access to schools for children in far-flung barangays and to complete incomplete schools. The minimum enrolment of 8 pupils and the maximum of 35 pupils per class shall be observed. Whenever possible and when teachers and other facilities warrant, MG classes composed of more than three (3) grades per class should be converted to at most 3 grades to a class.
    3. School Plant, Facilities, and Furniture of Multigrade Classes
      Regional Directors and Schools Division Superintendents give priority to multigrade classes in:

      1. allocating 3-room school building to MG classes without standard building or where the existing building is in need of total rehabilitation. The existing standards for schoolbuildings shall apply to MG schools.
        The classroom layout as well as furniture should facilitate multigrade teaching and learning. It should allow for: grouping/regrouping of school children according to age, grade level, ability level or interest; the creation of learning center or comers; and easy circulation of both teachers and students. Suggested classroom layout of MG classroom is found in Enclosure 1 while features of an effective MG classroom/environment arc found in Enclosure 2.
      2. the provision of textbooks and other support instructional materials as follows:
        1. Minimum Multigrade Instructional Package (MIP) for teachers which shall consist of: 1) Minimum Learning Competencies for MG Classes (MLC-MG), 2) Budget of Work for MG Classes (BW-MG). 3) Lesson Plan for MG Classes (LP- MG), and 4) Multigrade Teachers Handbook (MG-HB).
        2. Minimum Learning Package (MU) for multigrade pupils consisting of: 1) textbooks in all learning areas on at least 1:2 textbook-pupil ratio or as much as possible on a 1:1 ratio, 2) the Multilevel Materials (MLMs) on at least 1 set to 3 pupils ratio.
      3. allocating teacher items and/or assigning teachers
        In assigning teacher items, priority should be given to schools with multigrade classes having an enrolment of more than 35 per class and classes with more than 3 grades to a class.
    4. The Multigrade Curriculum and Program
      Multigrade schools/classes shall offer the New Elementary Schools Curriculum (NESC) and adopt any of the suggested class program. Divisions may use any of the suggested program options found in Enclosure 3 on a tryout basis and report on the findings of the experiment after one school year. Full implementation or use of a program should be based on results of the tryout.
    5. Support, Welfare and Incentive Program for Multi Grade Teachers
      To attract and retain effective teachers in multigrade schools the following measures should be implemented:

      1. regular monitoring of MG classes to sustain training gains and to provide them with technical as well as instructional support. In consideration, of the difficulty in reaching these schools due to distance and poor and/or irregular transportation facilities, principals or supervisors are authorized to collect actual transportation expenses incurred during monitoring and/or supervisory visits.
      2. regular training of MG teachers on multigrade teaching in the district, division and /or regional level should be given priority share from the 5% INSET funds.
      3. whenever resources/situations permit, at least one (l) classroom should be designated as lodging place of teachers/school administrators whose residences are considerably far from the school.
      4. granting of the Special Hardship Allowance tor MG Teachers (SHA-MG). All MG teachers qualified to avail of the “Hardship Allowance to Eligible Public School Teachers” provided for in DECS Order No. 73. s. 1996, shall receive said incentive under the said scheme. However, MG teachers who shall not meet the requirements stipulated in the same scheme shall be granted the “Special Hardship Allowance for MG Teachers” for handling multigrade classes. Criteria for the availment of the Hardship Allowance for multigrade teachers shall be issued in separate DECS Order on a year to year basis.
  3. Provisions of DECS Order 38, s. 1993 not superseded in this Order are deemed still in effect.
  4. This Order shall take effect immediately.
  5. Immediate dissemination of and compliance with this Order is directed.

As stated
DECS Order (No. 38, s. 1993)

To be indicated in the Perpetual Index under the following subjects: