SOLAR LEARNING TUKLAS ALS: INNOVATION IN EDUCATION
There is an alarming increase in Filipino out-of-school youths and adult dropouts in the Philippines in the past — more so now because of the pandemic. Based on data from the Department of Education (DepEd) last August 2020, 23 million students have enrolled in both private and public schools in the country, a significant reduction from the 27.7 million enrollees in 2019.
Further, according to the data from the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) in 2017 9 percent or 3.53 million of the estimated 39.2 Filipinos aged 6 to 24 years old were considered out-of-school youths. Some of their most common reasons for leaving school were marriage or family matters, lack of personal interest, and high cost of education or financial concerns.
This number is not that surprising considering that around 50 percent of out-of-school youths belong to families whose income falls within the bottom 30 percent of the population based on their per capita income.
While the government is doing its best to solve this dilemma problem, a new gem has risen to the challenge of addressing the gaps in Philippine education. Solar Learning Tuklas Digital ALS (Alternative Learning System) developed in partnership with La Salle Green Hills is offering a new path for Filipino out-of-school youth and adult dropouts. They can now take a new path to continue their education and complete Junior High School.
Their partners in this endeavor include its affiliate media company Solar Entertainment Corporation, DepEd ALS, and AidEd Philippines composed of La Salle Green Hills, Namnama Social Ventures, and KlikEd Open Learning System.
Solar Learning Tuklas Digital ALS is one of the three offerings of Solar Learning. The foundation’s two other offerings are the K-3TV Project dedicated to students in Kinder up to Grade 3 and vocational courses that will be launched soon in partnership with Thames International.
Solar Learning Tuklas Digital ALS is developed to adjust to the current educational landscape — distance learning. It uses a digital and asynchronous program delivered through the Tuklas mobile application. The whole program is patterned after DepEd’s curriculum for the Accreditation and Equivalency Program, an alternative pathway for persons who are literate but are unable to complete 10 years of basic education mandated by the Constitution. Through its program of blended education (Internet, Pay-television, videos, and individualized mentorship), learners can study and complete Junior High School at their own pace.
“Solar Learning Tuklas Digital ALS is our way of augmenting the country’s Alternative Learning System. We understand that educational attainment is important to getting better job opportunities,” Solar Learning President and CEO Mr. Wilson Tieng said.
He also acknowledged how the pandemic created a strain on the accessibility of education in the country. “With the pandemic making it more challenging for millions of Filipino out-of-school youth and adults, we would like to give them better access and a shot at completing junior high and eventually pursue senior high school and even college,” Tieng added.
With the help of KlikEd Open Learning System, which created the LMS or the Learning Management System of Solar Learning Tuklas Digital ALS, education has now become more accessible to everyone. They were able to create innovative features such as face recognition technology and other authentication methods and can also record and generate data on the learner’s progress. The app also allows students to attend asynchronous classes and to connect with a wide network of volunteer teachers and instructors throughout their learning journey.
For those who do not have access to a reliable internet connection, Tuklas learners can watch video lessons on the Solar Learning DepEd ALS channel available on digital free-to-air TV NCR Channel 21 and 30, and in over 170 Pay-TV operators nationwide. Furthermore, they are currently developing an offline version of the Tuklas Digital ALS that will be deployed in late 2022 to further cater to learners without access to any Internet connection.
So, for those who want to participate in the program all you have to do is avail of a scholarship voucher through a sponsoring LGU, civic organization or private entity, and then register to gain entry into a virtual academy where you can access exclusive learning tools such as enhanced modules, tests and assessments, and videos that are developed by La Salle Green Hills faculty.
For more information on Solar Learning, visit SolarLearningPH on Facebook, YouTube, and LinkedIn, or email [email protected].