As the Department of Education (DepEd) prepares for the upcoming school year, it says it will need P27 billion to purchase laptops for its teachers. There are around P800,000 teachers in the country.
Undersecretary for Administration Alain Del Pascua shared that only 11 percent of these teachers have a desktop computer or laptop at home. While he recognizes the budget required to purchase the needed laptops, he also noted that securing the P27 billion and before August 24, at that, would be challenging. DepEd, however, will still be providing laptops, tablets, and desktop computers to its teachers and pupils.
In the midst of the coronavirus disease pandemic, the education bureau has been adopting the use of alternative learning methods to sustain the educational needs of home learners. Classes were disrupted in March upon the implementation of community quarantines in Metro Manila and all over the Philippines.
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According to DepEd Secretary Leonor Briones, the department is gearing up for the implementation of its Basic Education-Learning (BE-LCP), which was approved by the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Diseases (IATF) on May 11, 2020.
DepEd will be implementing the use of distance learning and blended learning methods while physical classes are not possible. Distance learning allows educators to teach students remotely while blended learning taps into television, radio, electronic and online media for lessons. In an earlier televised statement, President Rodrigo Duterte said he would not want classes to open while a COVID-19 vaccine is not yet available.
Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque clarified that face-to-face classes would only be allowed once any form of community quarantine is no longer in effect in a school’s area. Department of Health (DOH) Secretary Francisco Duque III also stressed that schools must meet minimum health standards before it can physically open.
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