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To DepEd: Locate out-of-school youths ahead of Feb 1 early registration

Senator Win Gatchalian is urging the Department of Education to increase its conscious efforts in tracking down out-of-school youth and children, prior to the early registration set on February 1 for incoming school year 2020-2021.


VALENZUELA CITY, Philippines – Children watch and listen to a short program in their school in Brgy. Balangkas where they received free school supplies that were provided to them by the local government, May 2014 file. With the coming early registration for the next school year on Feb. 1, Senator Win Gatchalian wants the government to efficiently implement the Basic Education Enrollment Policy for all Filipino child learners regardless of their socio-economic background. Photo by Mark Cayabyab/OS WIN GATCHALIAN

DepEd Order (DO) No. 3, series of 2018 or the “Basic Education Enrollment Policy” seeks to locate, identify and register learners who are out of school, with disabilities and those who live in conflict-torn, far-flung, geographically isolated, drug-affected and natural disaster-stricken areas. Early registration also aims to locate learners such as those who are living with chronic illness and nutritional problems, and survivors of child abuse or economic explanation.

“Kung nais nating papasukin sa paaralan ang mas maraming kabataang nasa mahirap na kalagayan, kailangan natin silang puntahan. Nasa malayong mga lugar at nasa mahihirap na sitwasyon sila. Pero kung mapupuntahan natin, mapapadali ang proseso ng kanilang pagpaparehistro at mas makukumbinse pa natin silang pumasok,” said Gatchalian.

At the same time, Gatchalian is pushing for an institutionalized Inclusive Education Learning Resource Centers in all regional public schools nationwide.

This will highlight the need of persons with disabilities (PWDs) and children with special needs to adapt to regular schools, whether private or public, so that they’ll be provided the same care, attention, and guidance when they spend most or all of their time with non-special needs students.

The lawmaker also took note that DepEd should fully enforce initiatives such as the ‘Child Find’ component of Department Order 72, series of 2009 or Inclusive Education as Strategy for Increasing Participation Rate of Children. ‘Child Find’ aims to locate learners with disabilities through family mapping survey, advocacy campaigns and networking with local health workers.

In a public hearing on inclusive Education, Gatchalian lamented what he considers a dismal roll-out of ‘Child Find’ to locate children and youth with disabilities.