PASIG CITY, August 16, 2022— The Department of Education (DepEd) and 17 partner agencies convened on Monday to launch the Oplan Balik Eskwela 2022 (OBE) and present updates, assistance and preparations for the upcoming opening of School Year 2022-2023 on August 22.
“Thank you to our partners from other national government agencies and instrumentalities of the government, thank you for your support of the efforts of the Department of Education in opening in-person classes nationwide in August 2022,” Vice President and DepEd Secretary Sara Z. Duterte greeted.
With the theme: Kapit-bisig para sa ligtas na balik-aral, OBE 2022 is spearheaded by DepEd with the support from DOE, DILG, DOH, DND, DPWH, DSWD, DTI, DOTr, DICT, MERALCO, MWSS, MMDA, PAGASA, PNP, NDRRMC, NTC, and OPS, which compose the OBE Inter-Agency Convergence.
“Seventeen of you are present this morning, at ang gusto lamang naming sabihin ay napakaimportante na maramdaman ng ating mga kababayan, maramdaman ng mga estudyante, maramdaman ng ating mga magulang, maramdaman ng ating mga guro, at maramdaman ng ating publiko na ginagawa natin ito para sa bata, para sa bayan, at para sa tunay na pagbabago,” Undersecretary and Chief of Staff, and OBE co-chairperson Epimaco Densing stated in his message.
During the agency presentations, Dr. Alfonso Miguel Regala of the Department of Health (DOH), Health Promotion Bureau, expressed their commitment to provide protection to learners and teachers through vaccination drives and updating routine immunization.
Meanwhile, the Department of Transportation (DOTr), represented by Atty. Cheloy Velicaria-Garafil, Chairman of Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board, expressed that public utility vehicles (PUVs), traffic officers, and free rides to learners shall be available. DOTr earlier stated that their Libreng Sakay program shall continue to serve the learners that will be participating in the in-person classes.
The OBE Public Assistance Command Center (OBE-PACC) was also simultaneously launched during the program. PACC will handle immediate virtual assistance to the public in answering queries, concerns, complaints, and clarifications about the school opening.
“Ngayong araw din po, inilulunsad natin ang ating Oplan Balik Eskwela Command Center. Ang layunin po nito at para mapadali ang pagbibigay satin ng mga concerns, mga issues on the ground para matugunan agad ng Department of Education. The Department cannot do it alone. They always say it takes a village to raise a child, let’s be that village. Kapit-bisig tayo para sa bata, para sa kinabukasan ng bayan,” DepEd spokesperson Atty. Michael Poa said.
Education stakeholders can contact PACC through its hotlines (8638-1663, 8633- 1942, 8638- 7530, 8638- 7531, 8635- 9817, 8634- 0222, 8638- 8641); call and text through 0919-456-0027 for Smart and 0995-921-8461 for Globe; through email at email@example.com; and Facebook messages at DepEd Philippines.
“With the launch of the OBE, despite the COVID-19 pandemic and other challenges that have come our way, we are confident and assert that our success here will only be replicated in our next endeavors,” Undersecretary for Governance and Field Operations, and OBE co-chairperson Atty. Revsee Escobedo stated.