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‘Education in the Better Normal’ bill pushed in Senate

Senator Sherwin Gatchalian is pushing for the passage of the “Education in the Better Normal” bill to help boost the Department of Education’s (DepEd) digital shift amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Senate Bill No. 1565, authored by Gatchalian, aims to boost the creation of the Public Education Network (PEN) that will connect all public schools and DepEd offices nationwide.

Under the proposed measure, implementation of the “Free Internet Access in Public Places Act” will be fast-tracked to provide free connectivity and support distance learning in public schools.

DepEd is also urged to automate its services, including enrollment, submission of grades and payments to promote a zero-contact policy as the threat of COVID-19 remains.

“Nakikiisa tayo sa adhikain ng Pangulong mabuo ang Public Education Network upang gawing mas moderno at matatag ang ating sistema ng edukasyon,” said Gatchalian, Chairperson of the Senate Committee on Basic Education, Arts and Culture.

(We are one with the President’s advocacy to form the Public Education Network to make our educational system stronger and more modern.)

Gatchalian added that the bill aims to push for a “department-wide digital transformation.” for the education department.

The bill also requires the DepEd to improve its information and communications technology (ICT) capacity to streamline its workflow and processes.

To pursue the digital transformation, DepEd will collaborate with the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) and the Department of Science and Technology (DOST).


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