MANILA – A senatorial aspirant on Thursday urged the government to implement a “whitelisting” of educational resources to enable continuity of learning especially for students with limited or no access to the internet.
This, as the country continues to implement blended learning methods through the use of modules, online classes, and limited face-to-face learning amid the coronavirus pandemic.
“Dahil sa pandemya, nabago ang pamamaraan ng pag-aaral ng ating mga kabataan kaya hirap ang ilan sa kanila na makasabay lalo pa at kung wala silang internet. Kung mapunta kayo sa liblib at bundok na lugar, mahirap ang signal kaya napipilitan ang ibang mag-aaral na umabsent na lang sa klase (Due to the pandemic, the way our students attend their classes has changed so it is difficult for some of them to keep up, especially if they do not have internet. If you go to a remote and mountainous area, the signal is poor so other students are forced to skip classes),” Partido Reporma senatorial candidate Guillermo Eleazar said in a statement.
According to the Department of Education (DepEd), whitelisting refers to the practice of providing free access to learning resources and apps without incurring any cost to teachers and students.
Eleazar also praised the efforts of the DepEd as they use self-learning modules in printed format that are often delivered by the teachers to the students, especially those who live in far-flung areas and those without gadgets or access to the internet and electricity.
However, he said the use of offline educational resources will help both the students and the teachers in ensuring all types of learners will be able to adapt to the new learning set-up amid the health crisis.
“Sa Senado, isusulong natin ang suporta sa pagpapalakas ng telecommunication services sa buong bansa para maisakatuparan ang mungkahi nating (In the Senate, we will promote the strengthening of telecommunication services nationwide to implement our proposal) whitelisting (mechanism which allows some identified entities to access a particular privilege or service) for the online educational resources,” said Eleazar, a former national police chief.
“Sa pamamagitan nito, makakapag-aral ang mga estudyante kahit na wala silang load (With this, students can study even when they have no load) or internet,” he added.
The Partido Reporma senatorial candidate also seeks to streamline the educational resources in private and public schools to ensure that all learners will get quality education amid the pandemic.
Eleazar suggested a partnership between the DepEd and the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) for the expansion of the coverage of the STARBOOKS program.
STARBOOKS, or the Science and Technology Academic and Research-Based Openly-Operated Kiosk Stations, is a stand-alone information source designed to reach those with limited or no access to science and technology materials.
It is like a library in a kiosk where a student can search science and technology learnings materials as it contains hundreds of thousands of digitized resources in various formats such as video and audio.
“Kung makakagawa tayo ng mas maraming STARBOOKS na naglalaman rin ng iba pang resources bukod sa science and technology, mas maraming bata ang matutulungan nito. Hindi na nila kailangan pa gumastos para sa load upang makapag-aral (If we can make more STARBOOKS that also contain resources other than science and technology, it will help more children. They no longer have to spend for load to study),” Eleazar stressed. (PNA)