P700 Million Will be Dedicated to Providing Internet Connections to 7,000 Public Schools

The Department of Education is dedication P700 million to internet connection to over 7,000 schools all over the Philippines to prepare for the education sector’s shift to blended and online learning amid the COVID-19 pandemic, President Rodrigo Duterte told Congress on June 30.

Duterte’s 14th weekly report to Congress stated that DepEd would be “procuring internet connection for 7,000 schools to increase the total number of public schools with internet access.”

The 700-million Peso project should be completed in 10 months, according to the report. 

DepEd, along with schools, teachers, and students, have been preparing to shift to blended learning, which incorporates online lessons and offline activities to be done in the homes of students. Face-to-face classes are still prohibited until a COVID-19 vaccine is found, but classes are set to reopen on August 24 and would implement this new system of learning.

For learners without an internet connection, teaching would be done via radio and television broadcasts.

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According to the report, DepEd also allowed teachers to bring home devices from DepEd to aid them in teaching.

The department earlier conducted a survey to hear out the concerns and issues of students and teachers on learning amid the health crisis. As some learners and educators still do not have access to learning devices and internet connect, the report said “the availability of devices is a limiting factor to technology-case approaches to learning.” 

The Department of Information and Communications partnered with educational institutions to create a nationwide Digital Teachers Training Program that would help “build digital capabilities for both teachers and students as a response to the new normal.”

As the new school year approaches, the government is looking into making nationwide internet connection the norm, along with aiding the education sector not just with physical devices, but overall well-being of students and teachers as the pandemic continues to affect learning.

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