The Senate will tackle on Wednesday, February 24, the impact of mitigating the pernicious effects of the quality of distance learning, other psycho-social concerns and the implications of postponing the resumption of face-to-face classes amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Senator Win Gatchalian said.
The Chairman of the Senate Committee on Basic Education, Arts and Culture said that he will raise to the Department of Education (DepEd) to use all available tools and resources to avert a looming ‘learning crisis’ as part of its next steps, reiterating his fears that a huge chunk of more than 25 million learners in the basic education sector might end up unprepared for their next level of schooling.
While DepEd has exhausted all possible steps to provide for continued education amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, Gatchalian said that several challenges still hound the rollout of distance learning, including the inadequacy of connectivity, lack of enough guidance from teachers, and the quality and effectiveness of self-learning modules, among others.
A study by the Movement for Safe, Equitable, Quality and Relevant Education (SEQuRe Educ Movement), which assessed the rollout of distance learning, revealed that 70.9 percent of teacher-respondents are not confident that competencies set by the DepEd are actually being developed. Among student-respondents, 53 percent do not think or are not sure if they can learn the competencies set by DepEd for their grade level.
The study involved 1,395 teachers, 1,207 parents, and 620 learners from Grades 4 to 12.
“Dahil ipagpapaliban muna nating muli ang pagkakaroon ng face-to-face classes, mahalagang magkaroon tayo ng kaliwanagan sa kung ano ba ang magiging pangmatagalang epekto nito sa ating mga mag-aaral, lalo na’t hinaharap nila ang maraming mga hamong may kinalaman sa epektibong pagpapatupad ng distance learning,” said Gatchalian.
“Ang ating layunin sa pagpapatuloy ng edukasyon sa gitna ng pandemya ay masigurong natututo ang ating mga mag-aaral at maging handa sila para sa susunod na antas ng kanilang pag-aaral,” he added.
Under the 2021 General Appropriations Act, P16,615,694,000.00 is allocated for flexible learning options.