The Department of Education (DepEd) has committed to harness technology as part of the country’s preparation for the education’s new normal.
This was stressed by DepEd Undersecretary for Administration Alain Del B. Pascua during the first-ever Asia Pacific Public Sector Digital Summit held on May 7.
“If there are no face-to-face classes, then we have to devise all means to reach out to our learners and to bring basic education to them. We have to educate, by all means, we have to teach by all means, and our learners have to learn by all means,” Pascua said in a statement.
He said the government ensured the learning continuity amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic by implementing different technology-based projects such as DepEd TV, DepEd Commons, and DepEd Radio.
“We need to master distance learning now, making all the necessary improvements and perfecting our processes for the DepEd Commons, DepEd TV, DepEd Radio, the DepEd Learning Management System, the DepEd Mobile App, and others,” the DepEd official said.
Pascua cited the crucial role of the Public Education Network (PEN) in expediting the digital connectivity of all public schools and DepEd offices nationwide.
“With this network, schools will become connectivity hubs for all the households around it so that contents are made available to every learner in the community even without internet bandwidth. If this connectivity is reinforced by internet bandwith availability, then it is a big leap forward,” he said.
He bared that a DepEd project may be implemented to update and pattern DepEd TV after streaming services to allow learners to study their learning materials at their own pace.
“Those who need more time and repetition can easily review and go back to all the lessons, while those who learn in a faster pace can access new lessons and other lessons outside of their grade levels,” Pascua said.
Considering that classroom shortage remains an issue in the country, he batted for the continuation of online and broadcast learning platforms post-pandemic.
“With that kind of interface, our education curriculum can adapt to the needs of the entire nation and even the world. Then, our basic education becomes relevant and liberating for it serves what our nation needs and what our world needs,” he said.
The international educational forum was attended by some of the most respected public sector executives and industry thought leaders from around the world.
Alvin Ong, chief information officer of the Nanyang Technological University in Singapore, joined Pascua in the panel chaired by Mr. Anthony Salcito, Microsoft’s Vice President for Worldwide Education.