MANILA, Philippines – The past days marked the end of the school year for most students in the Philippines. Since most schools still started their school year in June, recognition and graduation ceremonies were held late in March or in early April.
And while most of us have been students at least once in our lives, some were more fortunate in spending more years to study formally than the others. In fact, some hundred thousand Filipinos did not experience learning in school at all.
Latest data from the Philippine Statistics Authority showed that in 2015, with around 64.936 million Filipinos 15 years and older living in the country, around 28.5 million just finished high school level, with 10.2 million finishing a few years only and 18.3 million finishing the whole secondary level but did not pursue further studies.
Around 17 million finished college based on the same data, with 8.2 million finishing some years in college, while 8.8 million finished college or took graduate studies after finishing their undergraduate degree.
In the same year, only around 1.1 million Filipinos did not finish any grade level and 15.6 million got elementary education – eight million of which finished elementary but did not pursue higher levels, and 7.6 million stopping at a certain grade level in elementary.
Numbers also showed that despite the rising total Filipino population of 15 years old and up, tallies of those who did not complete any grade level or stopped their education in the elementary level have been slowly decreasing since 2012.
In 2012, an estimated 1.231 million Filipinos did not finish any grade level. This went down to 1.158 million in 2013, then further down to 1.126 million in 2014, to just 1.108 million in 2015.
Those who finished any elementary level and graduated elementary also slowly dipped from 16.424 million in 2012, to 16.340 million in 2013, to 15.629 million in 2014, and 15.616 million in 2015.
Statistics for those who finished any college level or earned a college degree also went up during this period. From 15.808 million in 2012, it slightly went up to 16.306 million in 2013, then further up to 16.730 million in 2014 and 17.007 million in 2015.
Also, the 2015 dataset showed that despite similar numbers for total men and women 15 years old and above, a lot more men stopped their school in elementary level compared to women and way more women got into college compared to men. In fact, in both instances, the gap played around the two-million mark.
In that same year, 32.417 million men and 32.519 million women were in the 15 years old and above age bracket. Men had the slight lead in the tally of those with incomplete education, around 559,000 for men against 549,000 for women. For elementary level, men still outnumbered women, 8.722 million against 6.893 million.
For high school level, men still had the lead, 14.373 million against 14.089 million. Women, however, took the lead on post-secondary, 1.430 million versus only 1.314 million for men, and led the numbers for college level as well by more than two million, 9.558 million for women against 7.449 million for men. – RealTalk, April 10, 2017
Gene Paolo Gumagay and Jean Louis Jiz de Ortega contributed to this report.