September 29, 2021 – The Department of Education (DepEd) conducted the One Health Week before the school opening to highlight Oplan Kalusugan sa DepEd (OK sa DepEd) milestones and initiatives to support learners’ welfare.
Carrying the theme “Bayanihan para sa Kalusugan, OK sa DepEd sa Paaralan, at sa Tahanan”, the week-long celebration conducted from September 6 to 11 emphasized how partnerships for school health are essential to support the new school year which will remain under the “new normal” setup.
“We must provide all learners and DepEd personnel with maximized opportunities to holistic school health and nutrition services, especially the provision of basic medical, dental, and nursing care, through the leadership of our health personnel in close collaboration with partners and stakeholders at the school level,” Secretary Leonor Magtolis Briones said.
Spearheaded by the Bureau of Learner Support Services-School Health Division (BLSS-SHD), key updates and initiatives were unveiled in support of the six flagship programs under OK sa DepEd, an initiative launched in 2018 to facilitate the convergence of these programs for their effective implementation especially at the school level.
“Nailunsad natin ang pagbubukas ng 1,869 school and medical clinics sa mga piling central elementary schools sa buong bansa bilang bahagi ng [Medical, Dental, and Nursing Services]. Handa na rin ang pagpapatuloy ng School-Based Feeding Program na aabutin natin dito ang 3.5 million learners [kabilang ang lahat ng Kindergarten learners at mga undernourished learners mula Grade 1 hanggang Grade 6]. Nagdaos tayo ng mga virtual activities na isinagawa mula sa central, regional, at division offices para maipakita natin ang kahandaang ipagpatuloy ang iba’t ibang mga programa ng OK sa DepEd katulad ng Water, Sanitation and Hygiene or WASH in Schools (WinS), kasama ang School Mental Health, Adolescent Reproductive Health, at National Drug Education Program,” BLSS Director Lope Santos III shared.
One Health Week also featured the launch of the WinS Program’s Seal of Excellence Award 2021 to recognize schools that have met global standards and maintained crucial indicators in the implementation of the program for at least three consecutive years.
Meanwhile, Undersecretary for Administration Alain Del B. Pascua emphasized the importance of promoting and ensuring the health, safety, and well-being of learners in the preparation for a safe return to classes.
“Naglabas tayo ng mga patakaran, iba’t ibang memo [na alinsunod din sa patakaran ng IATF at tsaka ng Department of Health] dahil kinakailangan nating ayusin palagi yan hindi lamang nung simula kung hindi buwan buwan, oras oras ay may pagbabago dahil may nagbabago rin ang ating pandemiya yung hugis ng pandemiya,” Undersecretary Pascua shared.
The activities were hosted by DepEd TV Teacher-Broadcasters and Vacc2School Champions to highlight how school health programs complement curriculum and instruction.