Date of Publication


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Development Studies

Subject Categories

Development Studies | Education


College of Liberal Arts


Political Science

Thesis Adviser

Ma. Divina Gracia Z. Roldan

Defense Panel Chair

Julio C. Teehankee

Defense Panel Member

Eric Vincent C. Btalla
Levita A. Duhaylungsod
Ma. Teresa G. De Guzman
Carlos P. Buasen


This study investigated the relationship between indigenous peoples’ education and cultural rights by looking into the process of interface between the learning system of the Ayta of Zambales and the Indigenous Peoples’ Education (IPED) Framework of the Department of Education (DepEd). It covered a period of eight years, from 2011 when the IPED Policy Framework was released, to 2019, when this study was undertaken. Specifically, it sought to (1) determine the pertinent features of the Ayta Learning System; (2) examine the points of interface between the Ayta learning system and the Indigenous Peoples’ Education Framework (IPED) of the Department of Education (DepEd); and (3) investigate the relationship and effects of the indigenization efforts in the upholding and protection of the Ayta’s cultural rights. With ideas derived from the works of Ivan Illich in Deschooling Society and James C. Scott in the Art of Not Being Governed, this study was conducted in (1) Sitio Gala and Aningway-Sacatihan High School, Subic, Zambales; (2) Loob Bunga High School and Brgy. Maguisguis located at the Loob Bunga Resettlement Site in Botolan, Zambales; and (3) St. Francis Learning Center, Inc. in Mangan-Vaca, Subic, Zambales. It used a mix of quantitative and qualitative methods such as key informant interview, focus group discussion, survey questionnaire, secondary research, and Sikolohiyang Pilipino methods pagtatanong-tanong, pakikipagkwentuhan, and pagdalaw-dalaw. The findings of this study were the following: (1) The Ayta learning system took place in the ancestral domain with the elders acting as mentors who utilized experiential learning as a teaching methodology. The indigenous knowledge systems and practices (IKSP) were the content of learning. (2) The points of interface between the Ayta Learning System and the DepEd’s IPED Framework were established in the Ayta’s stages of the life cycle, farming system, fishing system, hunting system, customary laws, and rituals. The interface similarly included the Sambal Botolan orthography. These cultural standards were documented by the DepEd Schools Division of Zambales and validated by the Ayta nin Sambales. (3) This research also established the relationship and effects of the indigenization efforts in the upholding and promotion of Ayta’s cultural rights. The participants slightly agreed that the IPED, through the process of localization, contributed to the promotion of their cultural rights. Partnership between the Philippine State and the Ayta was fostered through the IPED Framework. This study concluded by stating how the IPED Framework positively impacts on the Ayta’s cultural rights.

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Aeta (Philippine people)—Education; Aeta (Philippine people)—Civil rights; Aeta (Philippine people) —Social life and customs

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