August 26, 2020 – The Department of Education (DepEd) on Wednesday lauded the initiatives of Manila City local government in providing its schools division of a Php 1.2 billion-worth of learning continuity packages for Manila public school teachers and students.

“Maraming salamat Yorme [Mayor Isko Moreno] sa iyong pagka-aggressive, at saka persistence and also for informing the public about what local governments and national departments do together and work together for the continuance of education,” Secretary Leonor Magtolis Briones said in her virtual message.

Led by Manila City Mayor Francisco ‘Isko Moreno’ Domagoso and assisted by DepEd Undersecretary Alain Del Pascua in the turnover ceremony, the Manila LGU distributed 11,000 laptops with pocket Wi-Fi for teachers, 136,950 tablets and 296,000 data sim cards for students.

“Ang [computerization program] ang ating kinabukasan. Ang pag-transmit ng education ay nakasalalay sa paggamit ng technology kasi iyan ang tawag ng panahon even with or without COVID,” Briones added.

With an allocation of P 1.234 billion from the Special Education Fund (SEF), Manila LGU is set to provide each household with one tablet and each Manila public school teacher with one laptop on top of a 10 gigabytes of data allocation per month for students and teachers.

“I wish you [teachers] all the best. I believe in you. Hindi kayo naging propesyunal nang wala lang. I know, naturally, in a short period of time, teachers of Manila [will] immediately can adapt to the new normal or blended distance learning. That is why, we, in our little way, ayaw na naming kayong pag-aalalahanin… Now, you have your laptop, ingatan niyo,” Mayor Moreno said.

The said gadgets for the conduct of distance learning were received by Ma. Magdalena Lim, Division Schools Superintendent of Manila, as part of the preparation of their division for the formal opening of classes.

The actual distribution of the gadgets will start on September 1 for elementary and secondary schools. Orientations for learners on the proper use of the self-learning modules and gadgets and webinars regarding cyber ethics and mental health will be conducted after the distribution.

Meanwhile, on a nationwide scale, the Department is continuously preparing for the opening of classes on October 5 as teachers are engaged in various upskilling activities, including module and worksheet writing, Messenger and Google Classroom, and Mental Health, Resiliency and Stress Care.

Parents are also invited to attend sessions on Parenting in the midst of pandemic, Virtual Ugnayang Paaralan-Tahanan and Parents Orientation and Consultation.