Education is strongly viewed as a pillar of national development and a primary avenue for social and economic mobility. The Belisongnons have deep concern for education because it occupies a central place in political, economical, social, and cultural life in the municipality. Although the local government allocates a budget every year for education though its Special Education Fund (SEF) and other form of appropriations, however the funds is very scarce in order to guarantee that every Belisongnon has the access to quality education. Hence, there are some important issues that need to be looked closely and resolved by the local government due to scarcity of funds.
- Educational Attainment and Literacy Rate
Almost all the household population 7 years old and over of Belison have attended or completed some levels of education represented by 96.7 percent while 3.3 percent represent the number of those who have not completed or attended any level of education. (Refer to Table DE-14) It can be notice that a high number of population is in the secondary education level. The data suggest that mostly of the population is relatively young. Data from 2015 census reveals that out of 5,370 population (35 years and over), 1,850 had finished their secondary education while 988 of them are college graduate or academic degree holder. In the age group 20-24, out of 1,097 population, 287 or 26% are academic degree holder while 407 had completed their secondary education.
The Belisongnons value education so much. They consider it as the best way to have in order to make a living. It is the reason why Belison has a high literacy rate of 97.4 percent as per 2017 CBMS survey a little bit lower than the 2015 literacy rate of the province. Female population has a high literacy rate of 97.5 percent compare to the male population of 97.2%. Based on 2017 CBMS data illiteracy subsist in the age group of 65 years old and over which only shows that majority of the younger generation are able to read and write.
- School-age population and Participation Rate, by level (elementary, secondary, tertiary)
The school age population of the municipality was computed based on the aggregate result of each age group from the CBMS 2017 survey. Participation rate was computed upon taking the enrollment rate of each school-age group. As presented in Table 13 participation rate is higher in the preparatory level with 114%. It can be noticed that private preschools in the municipality shows a good track record which encourage parents from other neighboring towns to enroll their preschoolers here.
- Number and location of schools, by level, public and private
The District of Belison under the Department of Education (DepEd) oversees the implementation of the programs and thrusts of the schools in the municipality. In 1961 only one school provided elementary education needs to the people of Belison. Today, the District of Belison has nine (9) complete elementary schools composed of eight (8) public schools and one (1) private school. These elementary schools in Belison not only contribute to the education of the local population, but due to their high academic reputation throughout the region, attract school-age pupils from surrounding communities as well. The Belison Central School located in Poblacion, was the first elementary school of the town, formerly a parochial school headed by a priest and was established during the Spanish Colonization in 1870 and became a central school when Belison became a town in 1961. The Borocboroc-Delima-Ipil Elementary School started as a primary school in 1951 was made into a complete elementary school in 1969. This is located in Barangay Delima. Some other elementary schools located in barangays, Sinaja, Concepcion, Rombang, Mojon, Maradiona and Buenavista sprouted due to high demand of the municipality in terms of education. The Belison Little Angels Study Center Incorporated is the only complete private elementary school in the municipality which started as a Kinder School. Belison National School located in Poblacion is the only secondary school of the municipality. It carried a name Belison Barrio (Jr.) High School in 1967 and undertakes its full implementation as national school in school year 1983-84. In terms of physical facilities aspect, and performance the school does not log behind and is of par excellence even in the whole region and even in the national level being the Hall of Famer in the implementation of Brigada Eskwela. It is also branded as the Center
for Culture and Arts in the whole province which produces graduates who do not only excel in academic aspects but also in their skills and performing arts.
- Other Educational Statistics
- Total Enrolment (past 3 school years)
As reflected in the table, it can be noticed that the number of enrollment in the elementary level is decreasing. An opposite scenario compare to other municipality is happening in the municipality of Belison. As of school year 2016-2017, there were 1,512 pupils enrolled in the elementary level, which decreases 7.2% from the 2013 enrollment. However, based on the data, presented in the demography, it was computed that the enrollment participation rate for this school year was 97% based on estimated school going age population for elementary which was 1,548. This means that for every 100 school-going age population 97 were enrolled and only three (3) do not go to school primarily due to lack of interest to study. As per research and group discussion during the stakeholder’s consultation, although the number of enrollment is decreasing, yet drop-outs is very minimal and the rate is decreasing and literacy rate of Belison is increasing. During the analysis of the scenario and deeply digging the reason, it was found out that, almost 25% of the total school-age populations are acquiring their elementary and secondary education in the private schools located at the neighboring municipalities such as Patnongon, Sibalom, and San Jose. Therefore, the result of decreasing number of enrollment and enrollment rate within the district are the causes of transfer of non-resident pupils and enrollment in the private schools. In the previous years, there were pupils coming from the neighboring municipalities enrolling in the elementary schools of Belison. But due to upgrading of educational facilities in their respective municipalities, they prefer to transfer for better education accessibility. The same scenario also exists in the secondary level. Senior high school was only implemented last school year 2016-2017, the reason why comparison of enrollment cannot yet be determined
- Number of teachers
There were ninety nine (99) teachers unevenly distributed in the nine (9) elementary and preparatory school handling classes to the enrolled pupils from the preparatory to elementary levels both in public and private. Based on Table 3.11.3dii, the preparatory teacher in the private schools had a big bulk of pupils with a teacher-pupil ratio of 1:30. However, this scenario can be considerable considering that each level has its schedule and classes ranges only to one hour. In the public schools, there are eight (8) teachers holding classes for preparatory level with a teacher-pupil ratio of 1:22. In the elementary level, the existing average ratio of teacher to pupil is 1:21 while in the secondary level, Junior and Senior High School, the existing teacher-student ratio is 1:21.
- Number of classrooms
The total number of serviceable classroom available within the district of Belison is ninety nine (99). Based on the DepEd standard student-classroom ratio of 1:40, both the elementary and preparatory level of public schools had meet the required standard with 1:22 and 1:24, respectively. In the case of private schools, only the elementary level had meet the standard. Nevertheless, private preparatory school conduct separate classes for each level, hence when in terms of number of pupils per level, the number of classroom is quite enough. The secondary level had exceeded the minimum standards in the ratio for the standard number of students in classroom with classroom-student ratio is 1:53 and 1:57. Hence, there is a need for an additional number of classrooms in the secondary level.