/ 24 February 2022

EDUCATION advocates urged candidates to include learning recovery plan and the improvement of early education in their platforms.

A group composed of teachers, parents and education advocates called on the candidates to strengthen the early grade learning, especially amid the pandemic.

“Education is a community effort. Lahat dapat magtulungan (We need to help each other),” Quintin Atienza, Education Governance Manager of the ABC+: Advancing Basic Education in the Philippines, said during a webinar with education stakeholders.

The ABC+ Project is an initiative of the Department of Education which is supported by the United States Agency for International Development and RTI International.

“Education, especially early grade education, is not the responsibility of the education sector or DepEd alone. Everyone, from the local government units to the private sector, has an important role in helping teachers and parents improve early grade learning,” Atienza said.

Meanwhile, John Patrick Sedantes, Executive Director of CHILDInitiative, a partner of ABC+ Project in Western Visayas, said that the local government and other private sectors should also provide support to parents amid distance learning so they can better assist their children in their education.

“These are local problems that can have local solutions. Community-based programs targeting parents, teachers, and learners have to complement national government efforts,” Sedantes said.

“Assistance from the LGU, private sector, and community leaders can build parents’ capacity on the use of gadgets and other learning materials so that we can better help our children in their online classes,” he added.

Roy Layosa of the Coalition for Bicol Development, a partner of ABC+ Project in Region V, meanwhile, urged local and national candidates to lay down their education recovery plans.

“Education is an election issue. Candidates who wish to be our new set of leaders should present their education platform, including a learning recovery plan from the two years of online classes, especially now that Filipino children are being vaccinated and DepEd is piloting limited face-to-face classes,” Layosa said.

“What is the post-quarantine set-up for Filipino early grade learners and how do we ensure that no Filipino child is left behind?” he asked.