In an effort to help younger students cope with the demands of distance learning this upcoming school year, the Department of Education (DepEd) has tapped the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) to assist in the implementation of its Basic Education-Learning Continuity Plan for Kindergarten to Grade 3 pupils.
Through the ABC+ project of USAID, DepEd expressed hope that pupils will be able to adjust better despite learning under alternative delivery modalities. The program, which started July last year, aims to improve literacy, numeracy, and social and emotional learning of pupils from Kinder to Grade 3.
The ABC+ project is a five-year partnership of USAID and DepEd. This year, the partnership was modified to respond to the current challenges in the education system especially that the School Year (SY) 2020-2021 will be conducted through distance learning.
USAID Chief of Party Ina Aquino, during a recent DepEd press conference, explained that the project started in July 2019 and will end by March 2020.
“We have been able to conduct our consultations with DepEd field and central office personnel for guidance on priority areas,” she said. “We have also been able to conduct our baseline studies,” she added.
Having received training recognition from the National Educators Academy of the Philippines (NEAP), Aquino said they were ready to roll out in the summer period. “But like everyone else, we had to pivot, adjust, and adapt when the pandemic was declared (and) we made a few but a very major adjustment to our way of working,” she said.
Aquino said that the partnership has paved the way for the conduct of online training to almost 4,500 teachers on how to strategize learning and to conduct the transition from school to home study. The initiative also developed home learning guides and learner activity sheets as part of the scheme.
“One of the schools, in fact, reported that they have already used the materials from the training to in turn train parents and other home learning facilitators,” Aquino said. “We’re happy for that and other parents were trained also,” she added.