MBTF TO SERVE AS FOCAL MAYOR FOR SENIOR HIGH SCHOOL PROGRAM IMPLEMENTATION
By Patrick Cendreda
The League of Cities of the Philippines (LCP) has designated Dagupan City Mayor Belen Fernandez as the focal person of the organization for the implementation of the Senior High School (SHS) program during LCP's National Executive Board Meeting last March 21 in Pasay City.
Mayor Belen T. Fernandez discusses with fellow chief executives from the League of Cities of the Philippines during the organization's National Executive Board Meeting held at Hotel Jen in Pasay City last March 21.(CIO photo)
Dagupan is one of 10 pilot cities for the City LEADERS Project and SHS implementation.
Fernandez said that as the focal mayor for the program, she is committed to coordinate and collaborate with the different local government units, as well as DepEd and other national government agencies, to ensure the effective implementation of the SHS program.
“It is imperative for city governments to actively support and participate in this initiative to reform our basic education curriculum. We will be the first reapers to the fruits of this program. An educated and skilled learner will be a productive member of our local communities,” said Fernandez.
For the past months, Dagupan and other pilot cities have undergone training and mentorship on SHS planning and budgeting, and have been assisted in establishing local multi-stakeholder task forces for SHS implementation and in tapping national government allocation for SHS facilities.
The city government is also holding continuing discussions on finding resources to support local SHS programs, identifying specific sources for priorities such as school lot acquisition, additional facilities for technical-vocational tracks, and additional classrooms.
Aside from the city government’s counterpart in funding, other possible sources will also come from the special education fund, national government agencies, 4th district representative Gina de Venecia, and partnership with the private sector.
Based on the projected enrollment in 2016, a total of 139 classrooms are to be constructed in different schools in Dagupan. All eight national high schools in the city, private schools and even the colleges and universities will implement the program.
Fernandez said some universities in the city have already expressed support to the implementation of the program, which will provide quality education and make students more competitive in the workforce.
The SHS program is in line with Republic Act 10533 or the Expanded Basic Education Act of May 2013, which revolutionizes current basic education offered in the country by making kindergarten compulsory and adding two years of high school with different field specializations.
The SHS curriculum contains four tracks which include technical-vocational-livelihood, academic, sports, and arts & design, which would help prepare graduates for higher education or entrepreneurship.
This initiative is supported by the Coalitions for Change (CfC) Program in Basic Education funded by the Australian Embassy - The Asia Foundation Partnership in the Philippines. #