USAID donates to DepEd 44,000 Minasbate reading materials

Published October 28, 2021, 3:23 PM

by Betheena Unite

Thousands of Minasbate language supplementary reading materials were donated by the US Agency for International Development (USAID) to the Department of Education (DepEd) in Masbate City to help the country in its bid to improve reading outcomes among Filipino learners.

MINASBATE READING MATERIALS– DepEd Region 5 Regional Director Gilbert Sadsad (leftmost) and ABC+ Chief of Party Lorina Aquino (rightmost) lead the turnover of 44,000 Minasbate language supplementary reading materials in Masbate City. (Photo courtesy of the US Embassy in the Philippines)

A total of 44,000 reading materials were handed over to the Education department on Oct. 25.

Through USAID’s ABC+: Advancing Basic Education in the Philippines project and DepEd Region V piloted the development of K–3 supplementary reading materials in mother tongue languages such as Minasbate and Rinconada for the Bicol region.

These materials, which include 67 Minasbate language decodable and leveled reader books, will reach more than 41,000 Minasbate learners in Grades 1 through 3 and almost 3,000 teachers and school heads in Region V.

“By providing K-3 learners in different regions access to reading materials contextualized to their own language, we believe that children can be better supported as they transition their reading ability from mother tongue to Filipino and English,” said USAID Philippines Deputy Director of Education Yvette Malcioln.

The books are aligned with DepEd’s Most Essential Learning Competencies and promote social and emotional skills, gender equality and social inclusion, and care for the environment.

“We are very grateful to USAID for bringing this activity to Masbate. The production of 67 Minasbate language decodable and leveled reader books is something that is now marked in the history of DepEd, that we are able to have this material for our K-3 learners,” DepEd Regional Director Gilbert Sadsad said.

During the turnover ceremony, writers, illustrators, editors, and quality assurance evaluators of Minasbate mother tongue reading materials were also recognized.

It was disclosed that the American agency will distribute more than 13 million supplementary reading materials written in different mother tongue languages, Filipino, and English in the 2021-2022 school year. These materials will benefit more than 500,000 early grade learners in Bicol Region, Western Visayas, and Maguindanao.

For the past 60 years, USAID has partnered with the Philippine government and local organizations to achieve shared development goals, investing more than P258 billion ($5.1 billion) to support the Philippines since 1961.