DepEd to conduct summer programs for students affected by Yolanda, Zamboanga siege

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From the Department of Education

Summer enhancement programs will be conducted in Eastern Visayas and Zamboanga City to bridge the learning gaps in schools because of the devastation brought by natural and man-made calamities, the Department of Education (DepEd) announced.

Secretary of Education Armin Luistro said, “We have to double our efforts as we approach the ‘last 2 minutes’ of this administration. These summer programs would help our learners master the competencies required in order to move to the next level.” DepEd Region 8 and the Division of Zamboanga were affected by Super Typhoon Yolanda, and the skirmish between government forces and a faction of the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF), respectively.

DepEd Region 8’s program, “Summer Fun in School 2014” or SFS, complements the efforts of various groups, local and international, in their psychosocial and stress debriefing interventions. It also aims to aid the students in catching up with their academic activities, as well as empowering them through child-led exercises.

The SFS will be implemented in four elementary schools and one secondary school for the divisions of Eastern Samar, Samar, Tacloban City, Leyte, and Ormoc City. Classes will start on the 28th of April until the 16th of May, 2014. There will be a four-hour session daily.

Part of the activities will be on competency building—mastery of competencies for the student’s current grade level, a child-led Disaster Risk Reduction Management (DRRM), and hygiene promotion during disasters. The SFS approach will be through academic classes on literacy and numeracy (reading, writing, counting, and problem solving), simulations of disaster drill which will be led by children, and various activities such music, arts, sports and games.

After the Zamboanga siege

The Division of Zamboanga will also start a Summer Enhancement Program (SEP) to supplement the learning competencies of the pupils after classes were delayed by the conflict between an MNLF faction and the Philippine Army in September 2013. It is a school-based program that will focus on the core subjects of Math, Science, English, Hekasi, and Filipino.

Zamboanga Schools District Superintendent Pedro Natividad said that the “duration of the program will depend on the students’ need. It may be for as short as a week to an extended period of one month, which will be assessed by the teachers.” He added that the program is open from April to May, with its implementation and duration different for each school depending on their need for the SEP.