Freeman Cebu Business

Support our learning environment

BUSINESS AFTER BUSINESS - Romelinda Garces - The Freeman

CEBU, Philippines — The Brigada Eskwela has taken off. Now in a simpler mode. The objective remains the same. To prepare the schools so that students will come to a clean environment of learning.  Walls may not experience another fresh layer of paint this year. Perhaps just neatly scrubbed surfaces and clearer spaces devoid of old school work and graded projects that sometimes teachers unconsciously collect after last grading when students no longer go back to school to receive them.

Soon the roads will fill up the traffic as continuous repairs and upgrades nag on the patience of commuters. But this is development. As long as the roads repaired and widened are done in areas of need, the sacrifice is worth it.

As parents gear up to empty their pockets to the requirements of their kids for fees and needed supplies, the health sector continue to monitor the possible protocols needed to ensure that pupils are well protected from COVID and similar diseases as they go back to full face to face learning.

The focus remains on the students. Naturally, this is because we generate more young minds every year though statistics show a concerning 40% drop out rate after grade 10. This emphasizes the need to review the educational system and the need for additional years in the grades compared to the capacity of parents to send their children to school in spite of free education offers.

As DepEd strives to encourage students to stay in school and keep the learning rising, not much has been said about the teachers. My advocacy remains for the simple provision of providing adequate working spaces for teachers.

Teachers are the major sources of learning transmission. Aside from the aids found in the internet, formal education inputs that standardize learning, come from teachers, who have to prepare their lessons so that they can equally equip their students. That is why it remains a deplorable sight to find teachers continuing to work along corridors, in make shift offices under stairways, and in nooks and crannies available in schools.

There are fortunate schools though that have teachers’ rooms and libraries where teachers can work on their lessons and grades along with their students. But space is really scarce and teachers have to give way to students to allow for more classrooms.

Who then will take care of the teachers to ensure that they have adequate study space themselves so that they can prepare their lessons and their teaching aids well? I hope that those who are able, will consider this as well. For those who donate school buildings, perhaps you can make it part of your corporate social responsibility program to include spaces for teachers.  Updated libraries are also needed. And if we cannot provide enough in the schools then maybe we can supplement the public libraries with more updated materials.

Internet connectivity is also a need in schools and I am glad to note that most schools have been provided with connection by DepEd and some generous companies and individuals. A good offshoot from the resiliency program during the pandemic. Though the bandwidth may be limited to accommodate only a few log ins at a time. Plus, there is the malady of poor service connections.  Still, we are grateful that both teachers and students have access somehow.

As the school year begins, let us find a way to contribute to a quality learning environment.

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