Education Secretary Leonor Briones apologized Monday to parents after a Department of Education memorandum uploaded on the DepEd website removed graduation rites for Grade 6 students.
Speaking to radio DZMM, Briones said the education department is not removing graduation rites for Grade 6 students.
"Our term for graduation means completion of a whole program
Since 2016, ang aming kindergarten ang tawag namin diyan ay moving up. Hindi namin tinatawag na graduate ka ng kindergarten," she clarified.
She said the confusion started when a memorandum she issued was changed to show that Grade 6 "graduation rites" will now be called moving up rites.
"Nagiging tradition natin when we finish the elementary part of someone's education, we call it graduation. The memorandum was changed without my knowledge...Hindi sanay ang mga parents sa moving up day," she said.
Briones said she personally believes that Grade 6 students who finish the program should have graduation rites. She said Grade 6 students are issued a certificate of completion, not a diploma, during the graduation rites.
Students who finish junior high school also have moving up day rites while those who finish senior high school will have graduation rites, she added.
"We apologize for the confusion," she said.
She also reminded school officials not to invite politicians to speak during graduation rites since these could be used for campaigning for the 2019 elections.
"We are emphasizing as much as possible hindi kailangan na mag invite ng pulitiko," she said.