Will distance learning be any different this school year?

Published September 13, 2021, 11:20 PM

by Merlina Hernando-Malipot

Without face-to-face classes and with schools still closed, the first day of classes in public schools nationwide officially started on Monday, Sept. 13, under a distance learning set-up.

(ALI VICOY / MANILA BULLETIN)

Just like last year, the Department of Education (DepEd) is implementing the Basic Education – Learning Continuity Plan (BE-LCP) as a response to the disruption brought by the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic in education.

Under the BE-LCP, multiple learning delivery modalities are used to ensure that learning will continue for students even when they are at home.

Enrollees this year will once again learn their lessons using multiple learning delivery modalities such as modular (printed and offline); online learning; television and radio-based instruction; and/or a combination of two or more modalities under “blended learning.”

When distance learning was first implemented in School Year (SY) 2020-2021, education stakeholders including parents, teachers and learners have raised concerns and challenges under the learning set-up.

READ:

Distance learning resulted in ‘dismal’ learning outcomes — survey

In its second year of implementation, will distance learning be any different this SY 2021-2022?

During the virtual National School Opening Day program on Sept. 13, DepEd Curriculum and Instruction (CI) Undersecretary Diosdado San Antonio explained that there will be “similarities and differences” in the implementation of distance learning this school year compared to last year.

Last school year, San Antonio said that majority of the concerns on distance learning such as the content of self-learning modules (SLMs), performance assessment, and learning delivery strategies – among others – were pointed out by stakeholders.

Asked how different the implementation of distance learning this year compared to the last school year, San Antonio said that as there “will be similarities” there will also be improvements.

San Antonio said that in a sense, the implementation of distance learning would be “similar” to last year with focus on empowering local school leaders.

“Parents will still be more active in facilitating learning at home because the students need support,” he added.

If there is anticipated difference, San Antonio said that is would be the “more aggressive efforts in adapting the good practices in distance learning.” Cross-curricular integrative assessment, he added, will be enhanced along with the implementation of academic ease measures.

Despite the errors found in SLMs last year, San Antonio said that schools will still be allowed to use locally-developed learning materials in case the modules from the DepEd Central Office are not yet available.

San Antonio said that DepEd also continues to fine tune the implementation of distance/blended learning by gathering the best practices of schools nationwide.

READ:

A new school year starts in millions of homes, again

 
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