March 15, 2022 – The Department of Education (DepEd) has allotted around Php 1 billion support fund for all public schools nationwide as more schools are set to participate in the progressive expansion of limited face-to-face classes.
“Nagdadagdag din kami ng resources, in addition to the regular budget, we are spending one billion more to strengthen the progressive expansion para sa mga schools,” Secretary Leonor Magtolis Briones noted.
“The progressive face-to-face as part of blended learning has already started as early as February and we are anticipating na mas lalong dadami ang mga schools na sasali dahil pagpasok ng NCR, malaking bulto ng eskwelahan yan pati sa other places na nasa level 1 at 2 na,” she added.
Undersecretary for Finance Annalyn Sevilla reported that the Department has prepared Maintenance and Other Operating Expenses (MOOE) budget allocations primarily to implement COVID-19 safety measures in schools and provide learning materials for blended learning.
“Kami po ay naghanda na ng pondo para sa pag-prepare natin ng ating progressive expansion ng face-to-face classes. In fact, na-meet na po namin ang ating mga Regional Directors. Marami po sa mga pondo na atin pong pinaghahandaan ay yun pong physical arrangement ng eskuwelahan, yun pong protection and safety ng mga learners at mga guro at syempre yung mga learning resources na kailangan natin,” Usec. Sevilla explained.
As of March 10, DepEd reported that there are 6,122 schools out of 8,244 schools that are implementing the limited face-to-face classes across the country.
The Php 1 billion budget will be distributed to all public schools and can also be used to provide television, speakers, and laptops for classrooms to support blended learning in the expansion phase.
“Iba na po ang itsura ng classroom ngayon at iba na rin po yung pagtuturo ng ating mga guro. Kailangan na po ng mga added electronic devices sa mga classroom. Ito po yung mga gastos o budget na ating pinaghahandaan,” Usec. Sevilla added.
DepEd Central Office Budget Division has downloaded the Sub-AROs last March 4 to the respective Divisions.
Meanwhile, DepEd also reiterated that schools will still implement blended learning as the pandemic risks are still present and for the learners to develop their digital skills.
“Gusto ko lang i-emphasize na hindi ibig sabihin na ngayong mag-progressive face-to-face na tayo ay iiwanan na natin yung konsepto ng blended learning. Kailangan pa rin yung online, hindi yung dati nating nakasanayan,” Secretary Briones said.