Inclusion of ‘peace education’ in curriculum eyed

"We are actually considering three possible things to happen here, whether we will incorporate it in all subject areas or offer a new subject for this purpose or open a separate degree for this," Rebollos said during the recently conducted Mindanao Educator's Congress held at the Garden Orchid Hotel here.

If realized, it will make WMSU the first university to offer peace education in the region if not in Mindanao and one of the few schools across the country to do such.

Her statement was in response to queries from the audience of at least 500 Mindanao educators who asked whether is it possible to introduce or integrate peace education into a higher educational system. 

During the congress Rebollos talked on the role of non-government and civil society organizations in peace-building.

In her presentation, she also challenged the teachers and educators to be involved in building peace as they are "the most effective and most credible to implement such."

The Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP) and the Department of Education (DepEd) had earlier adopted the inclusion of peace education in the curricula for elementary and high schools.

Some universities and colleges in the country have been also working for peace education in their common goal to establish a "culture of peace" against the "culture of violence" in the educational system.

Manila-based Miriam College opened a Center for Peace Education (CPE) to strengthen their workforce and students. CPE provides teacher-training on peace education, student development, conflict resolution training, peer mediation training, youth conferences, curriculum and materials development, peace advocacy and networking.

Bacolod City-based University of St. La Salle through Pax Christi Pilipinas also offered a graduate degree on Peace and Reconciliation.

Though a few other schools are working for it, peace education is yet to integrated as part of college curriculum.

During her investiture rites held on December 5 at the WMSU Gymnasium, Rebollos cited her platforms of a university working not only for academic excellence but also for social development and peace-building.

She bannered her motto of the university: "La Universidad Para Na Servicio del Comunidad" (A University for the Service of the Community.)

Prior to becoming WMSU president, Rebollos has been a known peace advocate and development worker being the vice president of Peace Advocates Zamboanga (PAZ) and at the same time vice-president of WMSU's Research and Development.