Vice Mayor Rodrigo Duterte, a Bisdak, is all-out in support of teachers speaking in a mix of Bisaya and English in public elementary schools.
That is good, he said. Bisdak is local lingo for a true-blue Bisaya from Cebu (coined after Bisayang Dako). The Dutertes are from Cebu.
The Department of Education (DepEd) regional office said that under its Multi-Lingual Project to be implemented this year as part of the K-12 Program, teachers in Kindergarten and Grade One would be speaking in a mix of English and Cebuano Bisaya, which is the dominant dialect in the Davao Region.
The young children would be lost if they are forced to learn in English, said Duterte in the Gikan sa Masa Para sa Masa television program on ABS/CBN.
He said he is not against K-12 which extended students’ elementary and secondary education from ten years to a total of twelve years.
Duterte joked that he was way ahead of students now complaining against the longer K-12 educational program of the government.
I finished my high school in seven years, he said.
An urban myth on the hot-tempered mayor says that the young Duterte took long to finish high school because he was troublesome, was suspended several times to the point that some schools would no longer accept him. He would later take the straight path and finished his Law in San Beda College.
While Duterte was not against K-12, he hurled a broadside at many subjects in high school like Algebra that he said were worth nothing practical in life after high school.
Algebra, he also said, was mind-boggling and he graduated high school without an iota of appreciation for the subject.
He thinks his situation is no different from other high school graduates who grappled with the “x, y, z” in Algebra and ended poorly, and who are now holding important positions.
For example, he said in jest, you ask the regional director of DepEd and I am sure she does not know her Algebra.