On Delays and Dropouts: A Data Primer on Education

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Using new data from the Department of Education, we can take a look at the current state of Philippine education. Is everyone being educated, is it inclusive, and teachers being paid enough? Find out in this article.

TJ Palanca https://www.twitter.com/tjpalanca
04-29-2014
A data-driven look at education reveals large and increasing disparities between regions and gender in terms of enrollment, and also a bleak compensation package for teachers. (Photo: <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/smemon/4984567320/in/photolist-8AtdcS-4R6kYr-95J17S-9p72i2-5aH3bV-akUUJa-5Xx4nM-aZhtF4-a9GaMX-8pHJNP-aguvee-9ia4xk-9Liu5Q-7EX7ri-bEBEhc-9Vi1si-9dBv8Q-gnDV6V-brGKJL-7EfwfJ-5teoHq-6eu8Ap-beBtDe-7Efwr5-8pLVjE-7hc7G7-9BZ7q9-4dvej1-9bEgDS-hpSn77-9rM5a9-7EbFa8-9LfGhe-dtuQ6g-bcbQ3i-aDz9aX-7ShWwA-5JVByJ-dwSojb-7Efwg5-4R6k5x-5teoyQ-6feXAf-7EbF4x-7PBrKg-cqJUss-65HLdF-cJHMPN-bUay88-2KRPV8' rel='nofollow' target='_blank'>Sean MacEntee/Flickr</a>,<a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/' target='_blank'> CC BY 2.0</a>)

Figure 1: A data-driven look at education reveals large and increasing disparities between regions and gender in terms of enrollment, and also a bleak compensation package for teachers. (Photo: Sean MacEntee/Flickr, CC BY 2.0)

How does the Philippine education system look like through numbers? With new data from the Department of Education posted on the wonderful data.gov.ph, we can generate some interesting snapshots that allow us to assess how the country is doing at teaching future generations.

Boys vs Girls

It seems that males are more likely to receive education, but girls are much more inclined to continue. Let’s take a look at student population data for school year 2012-2013:

At lower grade levels, males outnumber females, suggesting that males are more likely to be given the chance to receive education. However, as we move up the grade levels, the trend slowly reverses and at Grade 6, girls now outnumber boys. A number of factors may influence this: males may more likely be pulled out to work for the family, or they themselves might not value education as much as females. Either way, the large shrinkage in student population through grade levels is not that desirable.

This disparity among males and females can more easily be seen by examining two statistics: the Gross Enrollment Ratio (the ratio of the number of students to the school-age population), and the Net Enrollment Ratio (the ratio of the number of students in the appropriate school-age to the total school-age population). One important statistic that we can compute from these two ratios is the GER-NER Differential (the difference between gross and net enrollment ratios. This gap gets larger if there are students that are not in the appropriate grade level for their age-group (or what you could call delayed students).