MANILA - The Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) said Wednesday it was offering free online courses for Filipinos to learn new skills while on lockdown because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
TESDA Director General Isidro Lapeña said the agency is offering 68 short online courses for those who wish to learn new skills or improve their abilities.
Among courses offered in the program are massage therapy, basic computer operation, web development, bread and pastry production, and cookery.
The TESDA online course program started in 2012 but was expanded to accommodate a larger number of enrollees since mid-March after parts of the country were placed on lockdown and millions were told to stay indoors to prevent the spread of the coronavirus disease, said Lapeña.
"Because ang advise sa ating mga kababayan ay to stay at home to stop the spread of the coronavirus, para may ginagawa 'yong mga kababayan natin, we expanded itong TESDA online [courses] natin," he said.
(Because the advise to our fellow Filipinos is to stay at home to stop the spread of the coronavirus, we expanded the TESDA online courses so they have something to do.)
There are no requirements for those who wish to enroll aside from computer literacy, said Lapeña.
Those interested may register on the e-TESDA website.
Lapeña said enrollees can finish a course at their own pace.
Enrollees will be given a certificate of completion after finishing a course.
Those who wish to receive a national certification must take assessment tests, which require the learner's physical presence at the technical schools, said Lapeña
"Kapag 'yong movement natin hindi na restricted because of the ECQ (enhanced community quarantine), then you can have yourself assessed," he said.
(Once movement is no longer restricted because of the ECQ, then you can have yourself assessed.)
From March 16 to April 27, 260,000 Filipinos have registered for the online courses, where 60,347 have graduated, according to Lapeña.
Below is the full list of courses: