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TABUK CITY, Kalinga – In an online survey conducted by the DepEd Schools Division of Tabuk City during the second week of April by which 843 or 57.86 percent of its personnel responded, it was found out that 831/843 or 98.65 percent of the respondents have basic ICT knowledge on word- processing, basic spreadsheet, presentation (PowerPoint, Impress, etc.), sending e-mails, and use of social media platforms (Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, etc.) While 221/ 843 or 26.23 percent claim to have advanced ICT skills which may include handling advance spreadsheet, multimedia, and programming.
These facts disclosed by the OIC Schools Division Superintendent Irene S. Angway in the SDO’s radio program ‘DepEd Tabuk City Reaching Out’ aired through Radio Natin 103.7FM on April 18 lights a ray of hope that service providers could be ready if online alternative delivery mode of education would be needed in response to the present crisis in relation to COVID 19.
The teachers while convincing themselves to embrace the new normal have felt relief over Duterte’s declaration that Kalinga, Apayao, Ifugao, and Mountain Province are among the low risk provinces to be under the General Community Quarantine by May 1 just recently.
Apparently, as they work from home checking their school forms, they also have to prepare themselves to be able to efficiently function for the digitization of education.
As almost everything is to be done online, many webinars and online courses are now offered assisting teachers on the development of e-books, learner’s modules, and other instructional materials.
As a matter of fact, the DepEd Central Office through the Education Technology Unit conducts webinar series which is offered for free for two batches this April and May. Teachers may access the free webinars on Open Education Resources at https://www.facebook.com/depededtech/. This could help them do their work far easier, more efficient, and fun.
On the other hand, learners’ readiness for the new online mode of education is also under question. With this, DepEd is now assisting them through lessons and activities which teachers can access for free on the DepEd Commons platform at https://commons.deped.gov.ph/. It is hoped that through this, the learners would be able to finish the SY 2019-2020 competencies and at the same time prepare themselves to possible online learning.
On the SDO-initiated Survey, only 1,696 or 5.87 percent of the learners from elementary to senior high school were able to take part in the survey which does not give us a good figure to make a positive conclusive statement in favor of online learning. However,” one sure thing is that education shall continue,” Angway commented during the earlier mentioned radio program segment.
On the question about the readiness of DepEd Tabuk City for the new normal that entails work from home and learning online; along with it is the concern on the lack of gadgets like smartphones, tablets, and laptops by the public school learners and some teachers, poor internet signal in some places, and the cost of internet load.
By Sylvia Pepito