New DepEd Curriculum Draws Flak Over Aims of Changing ‘Diktadurang Marcos’ to ‘Diktadura’

By: Jetaime Kaina Cerbito
September 11, 2023

The Department of Education faces calls from academic representatives to uphold historical truth over its change of crucial terms regarding the Dictator Marcos. Image courtesy of Rappler.

Educator groups criticized the Department of Education (DepEd) Bureau of Curriculum Development’s (BCD) memorandum released on September 6, 2023 over the removal of former president Ferdinand Marcos Sr.’s name from the term ‘Diktudurang Marcos’ in grade 6 textbooks.

As stated in DepEd’s memorandum, the decision to revise the Araling Panlipunan curriculum was made after an “arduous process of review and revision was done under the guidance and scrutiny of experts, the review of stakeholders, and the public and the launch of MATATAG curriculum.”

Alliance of Concerned Teachers (ACT) party-list and Congress of Teachers/Educators for Nationalism and Democracy (CONTEND) slammed the revision as a “blatant attempt to whitewash the crimes and atrocities committed under his (Marcos Sr.) regime.”

“To reduce his oppressive rule to a mere ‘Diktadura’ is a disservice to the countless victims of his dictatorship and an affront to the pursuit of historical accuracy and truth.” the group added.

Citing reports from the Asia Pacific Foundation, the Marcoses have been ‘repainting their family portrait’ shifting from the negative perspective in the absence of a comprehensive understanding of Marcos-era history among the Filipino Youth.

Curated disinformation campaigns surfaced on numerous social media platforms including montages of Marcos-era infrastructure projects and the "glorified" martial law era as a time of peace and golden age leading to the May 9 elections in 2022 wherein Marcos Jr. won the presidential position.

The memorandum is only one among the numerous attempts of historical distortion and revisionism over Marcos’ regime.

In 2011, another myth claimed the Marcos family owns and stores enough gold to resolve the world’s poverty issue. Such conspiracy grew over the years causing public concern as it was escalated by die hard Marcos supporters, and Marcos-Duterte fringe groups among others.

ACT Teachers party-list Rep. France Castro urged her fellow educators and legislators to support her call on DepEd to reverse its decision and restore accurate representation of the martial law period in the curriculum.

DepEd has yet to comment on the subject matter.