DepEd launches Go! Education

In its continuous effort to provide quality education and stable learning system, Department of Education (DepEd), headed by Bro. Armin Luistro, FSC, secretary of the said department, recently launched a campaign that aims to overcome the challenges our country is facing in its journey towards providing a progressive and greater opportunity education - Go! Education.

This school year, as the K to 12 Program kicks off, more and more school problems come surfacing. From the lack of classroom, teachers and books to school sanitation, students health condition and the coming natural calamities, no one can't deny the fact that we are still far from that goal of having the best education system in Asia.

Bro. Armin Luistro, FSC
Secretary, Department of education

But as DepEd launches its Go! Education campaign which focuses on the three primary components aimed at improving access and quality of basic education in the country, namely  improvement of teacher quality, enhancement of the curriculum through the K to 12 program and achievement of set goals in addressing resource deficits, I guess it safe to say that we will get there.

On its press launch that was held at the Department of Education office last week, Secretary Bro. Armin Luistro, FSC emphasized that the government, mainly his department, is trying their very best to make every thing work. By starting the school year with this new program, he assures that every thing will fall into its right place one solution at a time.

Guest speakers that day that were three people representing the pyramid that will make this campaign effective and successful. Beginning with Lou Sabrina S. Ongkiko, a public school teacher at Culiat Elementary School in Tandang Sora, Quezon City, Teacher Lou supports DepEd's endeavor in uplifting the country's education system as the representation for the "teacher training" component of Go! Education.

Teacher Lou Sabrina S. Ongkiko
Culiat Elementary School

DepEd believes that the proficiency of teacher is a key factor in the implementation of reforms in basic education. And in order to ensure that teacher are well-prepared and equipped with necessary knowledge and ability to adopt to the new curriculum, intensive training and additional benefits were provided to the teacher to improve their core competencies and boost their morale.

Next speaker was Peachie Flaviano, a mother of five, Nanay Peachie also supports DepEd's Go! Education campaign because she believes that if there's someone who will benefit from this campaign, that'll be the parents like her who want their children to be successful in life.

Peachie Flaviano

Enhancing the basic education curriculum is the top most priority of DepEd's Go! Education campaign. And now that all schools in the country follows the K to 12 Basic Education Reform Program, it is expected to have a more effective learning system. Upon reaching this stage, DepEd is aiming to transform the basic education curriculum so that it produces holistically developed learners prepared for higher education, middle-level skills development, employment and entrepreneurship.

Now, DepEd just don't want to have graduates, they want to have students who can pursue life even without college diplomas. And with this K to 12 Program, it assures that every student that completes it will be equipped with skills, competencies and recognized certificates equivalent to a two-year college course.

The last speaker of the day was Dr. Diosdado San Antonio, PhD. A dedicated educationist and also a supporter of Go! Education, for 27 years of having a career in education, Dr Diosdado has seen first-hand how the lack of appropriate resources deters learning. From being a regular school teacher, to school principal to school division superintendent, Dr. San Antonio knows really well the deficit that public school have to deal wit in terms of resources and how better facilities can significantly improve the learning environment of the students.

Dr. Diosdado San Antonio, PhD

Up to this day, DepEd continues to address the current gaps and deficiencies in the public school system to guarantee the seamless execution of the revised curriculum in schools all over the country. This year, according to Secretary Bro. Armin, DepEd will achieve Zero Backlog in textbooks and seats. He said that as classes open this school year, public school students will no longer be short of textbooks and seats. This is the first time that a 1:1 student-textbook and student-seat ratio will be achieved by DepEd.

After the inspiring talks, the respected broadcast journalist, Miss Che Che Lazaro took the center stage to facilitate the Q & A segment with the guest speakers and Secretary Bro. Armin Luistro.

Che Che Lazaro

Miss Lazaro, who I believed is an advocate of quality education in our country, helped the other guests and fellow media practitioners to understand the campaign more. And with clearer explanation of the campaign and the department's answer to other related issues that surround the education system in our country, we were able to have a better view of what is this all about.

Another Go! Education program establishes the value of pre-school as an important foundation in basic education. With the enactment of Republic Act 10157 or the Universal Kindergarten Act, Kindergarten was institutionalized as part of the basic education system and is now compulsory for admission to Grade 1. Soon, Kindergarten will also be offered in Madrasah schools, under the Madrasah Education Program for Muslim students. 

To facilitate the learning of elementary students nationwide, DepEd has also introduced the Mother Tongue-Based Multi-Lingual Education (MTB-MLE).  With MTB-MLE, 12 local languages will be used in elementary classes starting SY 2012-2013. These 12 languages are Tagalog, Iloko, Kapampangan, Pangasinense, Bikol, Cebuano, Hiligaynon, Waray, Maguindanaon, Maranaon, Tausog, and Chavacano.

Overall, DepEd is commited to close all gaps in classrooms, teachers, water and sanitation facilties within four (4) years. By 2013, DepEd aims to build enough classrooms in all public schools.The national budget appropriates funds for 10,000 classrooms annually, while private organizations composing Bayanihang Pampaaralan and TEN Moves pledged to donate 10,000 classrooms as well. In addition, classrooms for Senior High School (Grades 11 and 12) will be built starting 2015. 

As for the water and sanitation, in SY 2010, shortage in sanitation facilities was 135,847. DepEd is mounting a drive to decrease this to 80,937 by SY 2012.

I really hope that all these endeavors will be a success because I strongly believe that education is the key to have not just a stable country but happy citizens as well!

Keep up the good job, DepEd!

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