The Commission on Human Rights (CHR) hailed the city governments of Quezon City, Pasig, and Manila for supporting Filipino children's education by appropriating funds and gadgets for students and teachers in their transition to blended learning.
Pasig City allocated P1.3 billion for laptops, tablets, printing of modules, and provision of Internet service for teachers and students. On the other hand, Quezon City has made a commitment to provide tablets for 176,000 public school students covering Grades 7 to 12, while Manila appropriated P1 billion for laptops with pocket WiFi devices for teachers and 136,950 tablets for students.
CHR spokesperson lawyer Jacqueline de Guia said that this support is crucial in ensuring one's right to education in the middle of this coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. "It helps alleviate the compounding burden that beset students and teachers as they navigate their way to the new normal of education," she said.
De Guia added that many teachers have already gone out of their way to ensure that students continue to learn. Students and their parents have also made adjustments and sacrifices just so they could keep up with blended learning.
However, for many families, gadgets such as laptops, tablets, and Internet access are considered "luxuries" that they could not afford. This is why the commitment of local government units (LGUs) to support these families at this time ensures that all students get to move forward with their education.
"The foresight of the aforementioned city governments to anticipate the needs of students and teachers help in ensuring that no one is left behind," said De Guia. "The right to education is for all and must never be a luxury that only a few can afford."
The CHR is hoping that more local and city governments, with the help of the Department of Education (DepEd) and the national government, will follow suit and provide educational support to the underprivileged members of their society.