CEBU CITY, October 13, 2023 – The Department of Education (DepEd) underscored the importance of creating a culture of literacy and lifelong learning during the 2023 National Literacy Conference (NLC) on October 11 at DepEd ECOTECH Center.

“Our goal is to promote functional literacy and ensure that every Filipino possesses the skills and knowledge in real life, equipping individuals with the ability to make informed decisions, communicate effectively, and actively participate in the workforce and society,” Vice President and Secretary of Education Sara Z. Duterte said during her keynote address.

With the theme, “Building a Culture of Literacy: The Power of Communities as Catalysts of Literacy Development,” the 2023 NLC gathered around 500 participants to enhance and provide educational opportunities, advocate for lifelong learning, and empower community members in literacy activities.

“By investing in education and promoting literacy, we are investing in the future of our country, unlocking the potential of our people, and paving the way for sustainable development and prosperity,” VP-Sec Duterte added.

During the plenary sessions, regional delegates and resource speakers highlighted the role that communities play in fostering and promoting literacy skills among learners and individuals through four sub-themes, which include Building a Culture of Literacy Towards a MATATAG Nation, Strengthening Intercultural and Inclusive Teaching and Learning Practices, Recognizing the Vital Role of Communities in Literacy Development, and Advancing Literacy Through Research and Development.

“The journey to promote literacy is not without its challenges, but as we come together to share our experiences, knowledge, and innovative approaches, we become a formidable force for change. We are the ones who can break down the barriers to learning whether they be social, economic, or cultural,” Undersecretary for Curriculum and Teaching Gina O. Gonong said.

In addition, the LCC issued a Call for Papers last September 8, to gather policy recommendations that may influence, shape, or impact approaches, strategies, and mechanisms at the national and local levels in building a culture of literacy in the country.

These policy recommendations were also summarized and presented at the end of the conference.

The NLC hopes to increase awareness of key education stakeholders on the current initiatives of the Department and to strengthen intercultural and inclusive teaching and learning practices in an ever-changing education landscape.