RISING AND SHINING AMIDST COVID 19 PANDEMIC

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We rise and shine together against COVID 19!”

As Secretary of Education Leonor Magtolis Briones has expressed, “Education must continue.” This served as the motivating factor as we, the Bagong Sikat Elementary School community, commit ourselves to facing the challenges brought by the COVID-19 pandemic which signaled the beginning of the new normal in education. Due to the pandemic, delivery of education in the country has greatly changed.

Due to the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic, public and private schools were temporarily closed to ensure the safety and protection of the educators and learners. The teaching-learning process had to be conducted remotely with the use of modular and digital platforms.

Different learning modalities were recommended so that the delivery of basic education may continue. Modular, digital, online, radio-based instruction, Television-based instructions, and limited face to face were the different modes of instruction are the given options to educators, parents, and learners.

Remote learning has posed many challenges to Filipino learners. Majority opted for modular distance learning for it is the most appropriate and comfortable mode to many. Lack of gadgets and absence of access to the internet of most learners have tied the hands of many parents in choosing the online modality.

Bagong Sikat Elementary School accepted and embraced the challenges brought by the pandemic and commit itself to narrow the gaps in education and gain the losses. The school have been implementing different interventions to address the needs of the learners with the focus on the improvement of reading and numeracy development.

With its partnership with the Reading Association of the Philippines (RAP), different reading strategies were shared to the teachers and parents thru its RAP on Wheels program conducted even before the outbreak of the COVID 19 pandemic and during the pandemic. With its objective “Tuloy ang Pagbasa sa Gitna ng Pandemya”, BSES has come up with the reading intervention program Kapitbahay, Kapit Basa. This is a book-sharing activity where books donated by RAP were distributed to the learners to be read at home with their neighbor learners. Read Aloud and Storytelling activities were also conducted by parents while the learners are confined at home. These activities not only improve the reading skills of the learners but also provided an opportunity to have a better-quality bonding time for their families.

These activities were followed up by the teachers using two-way radios since most of the learners have no gadgets and access to internet and thru Online Kumustahan using different social media platforms.

At the onset of the opening of School Year 2022-2023, Bagong Sikat ES crafts plan of actions thru the School Learning Continuity Plan (SLRP) which is the blueprint of actions to be undertaken for the coming years. It is a product of the collaborative efforts of the school’s internal and external stakeholders. This will serve as blueprint of the school on bridging the gaps and gaining the losses in education, and in delivering quality services to the community.

The SLRP will assure that the school especially the teaching personnel, learners and other support staff of the school are all equipped with the needed skills and resources as the school year opens this August 24. Series of seminars were lined up to capacitate the teaching personnel to provide them with appropriate trainings to reinforce and upgrade their capabilities especially the utilization of technology and integration of ICT in their lessons.

The formulation of the SLRP is anchored on the Sulong Edukalidad, the new battlecry of the Department of Education (DepEd) with the KITE Framework as its four key reform areas: (1) K to 12 Curriculum review and update; (2) Improvement of learning environment (3) Teachers’ upskilling and reskilling; and (4) Engagement of stakeholders for support and collaboration.

Relevant data were gathered to determine the course of actions the schools have to undertake. Data from the pre-pandemic period and during pandemic were analyzed and compared to see the learning gaps and losses in education. Consultation with internal and external stakeholders were also undertaken before crafting the learning recovery plan.

With the learners’ welfare as the primary focus of education, necessary programs and projects must be conducted collaboratively by stakeholders to ensure that everyone is ready and well-equipped with all the relevant skills and competencies for the opening of classes. It is like arming soldiers with before going to battle, only the difference is that teachers were provided with necessary tools and skills and trainings.

Every learner has a right to have quality education. Varied support mechanism will be implemented to assure that learning outcomes are aligned on the Most Essential Learning competencies of the Department of Education. Learning resources assessment will be quality assured to ensure that all instructions are focused on the target skills set by the department.

The task of gaining the losses and bridging the gaps in education brought by the pandemic is not a sole responsibility of the school alone. It is everyone’s responsibility. Parents, learners, other members of the community, national and local government, Non-government organizations, and private individuals must collaborate and work together, reignite the spirit of bayanihan so that we could rise and shine again from what is considered as one of the dark moment of our time, for the welfare of our learners. -END-

by AMELITO M. MAGTIRA,PhD

School Principal II

Bagong Silang Elementary School

Schools Division Office-Cabiao Annex

Schools Division Office of Nueva Ecija

Photo: unicef.org

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