DepEd issues guidelines to strengthen, expand ALS program

By Merlina Hernando-Malipot

In line with its thrust to strengthen and expand its Alternative Learning System (ALS) program, the Department of Education (DepEd) issued the implementing guidelines on the allocation, utilization, and monitoring and evaluation of support to operations funds to ALS at the regional offices.

Undersecretary Nepomuceno Malaluan, in DepEd Order No. 45 series of 2018, issued the said guidelines also aims “to promote and support the program management activities and capacity-building program for ALS implementers at the regional offices.”

Expanding and strengthening the ALS program, DepEd said, is pursuant to its goal of “providing quality, inclusive, relevant, and liberating opportunities to out-of-school children, youth and adult.” Thus, “funds are allocated to support the regional offices in their ALS-related activities to ensure that the ALS programs are reaching the unreached and the quality of program is based on the standards.”

Likewise, DepEd noted that the issuance of the guidelines also “aims to ensure that the utilization of funds in support of the ALS program implementation at the regional offices is strategic and efficiently and effectively managed.”

DepEd said all regions shall receive the Support to Operations (STO) fund amounting to P1,250, 000 each which will be used for the activities related to program management such as the conduct of monitoring and evaluation, regular meetings and other organizational management activities; and capacity building such as the conduct of training-workshop for ALS implementers on the utilization of the ALS K to 12 curriculum, training on life skills for ALS implementers and other similar activities.

In a separate order, DO No. 52 s. of 2018 signed by Education Secretary Leonor Briones, an additional provision was added to the allocation of funds wherein Regions 3 (Central Luzon), 5 (Bicol Region), 7 (Central Visayas), 8 (Eastern Visayas), 11 (Davao Region), and 12
(Soccsksargen) shall receive “additional STO fund” amounting to P2 million each.

The ALS program is considered as the DepEd’s “flagship program” on inclusion which continues to bring education to a greater number of out-of-school youth and adult learners nationwide. It is a “parallel learning system” under DepEd that provides a “practical option to the existing formal instruction.”