MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Education is widening its
probe on alleged cheating in the conduct of the National Achievement
Test (NAT) and has called on people aware of leakage of test questions
to report this to DepEd.
DepEd officials began its investigation after the first reported
case of leakage of NAT test questions in Pangasinan schools held on
The NAT is conducted as part of DepEd’s annual effort to assess the
level of competencies of elementary students in core subjects and is
also seen as measure of how well schools are teaching students.
The DepEd “culprits in NAT cheating are in hot water” as investigations are conducted.
In an official statement, DepEd said that “six erring school
officials in Region 1 have already been suspended on the alleged
DepEd officials are also waiting for reports from the schools to have allegedly committed the cheatings.
“We do not tolerate dishonesty in our ranks,” said DepEd
Undersecretary Alberto Muyot. “Such acts build the wrong character in
our students,” he added.
Meanwhile, DepEd Region 1 Director Ligaya Miguel issued on order
on March 21 which said “five school officials from different elementary
schools and a district official are now under preventive suspension
after a formal charge was filed by that office.”
DepEd officials encourage witnesses to the other cases of cheating to
come forward so that appropriate charges can be filed against the
“We need the sworn statements of witnesses so that we can immediately
prosecute those who have committed irregularities,” he said
Muyot assured possible witnesses who fear harassment from superiors
that, “officials who harass witnesses shall also be charged in
At present, officials from two other regions are conducting investigations on allegations of cheating in their areas.
The regional directors are expected to submit their reports next week.
Earlier this week, Teachers’ Dignity Coalition (TDC) called on the
DepEd to conduct a comprehensive review and assessment on the
implementation of NAT saying “this is needed to evaluate its efficiency,
usefulness and reliability.”
In a statement, the TDC National Executive Committee called on DepEd
officials to take the lead in investigating alleged cheating after the
reports of leakage for the NAT in Mangaldan 1 Central School in
Pangasinan two days before the exams was administrated on March 14.
Source: Manila Bulletin, Ina Hernando-Malipot, 3-25-2011