MANILA — The Department of Education said Thursday it would deliver 40,000 laptops to its teachers, schools and field offices this month in a bid to provide education workers with the appropriate tools for the second academic year under distance learning.
"This would go a long way in our continued implementation of our Basic Education-Learning Continuity Plan and in providing technical support to our field offices nationwide," Education Secretary Leonor Briones said in a statement.
Education Undersecretary Alain Pascua added that it was still the government's responsibility to provide laptops to public school teachers, most of whom have been using their own devices to carry out distance learning.
"Our direction is to provide laptops for each teacher and our DepEd offices," Pascua said.
The laptops were procured through the Department of Budget and Management-Procurement Service with funding from the Bayanihan to Recover As One Act (Bayanihan 2), the DepEd said.
This also comes after a recent study by the National Research Council of the Philippines found that more than half of Filipino teachers spent their personal money for gadgets and internet connectivity in the implementation of distance learning, the alternative to in-person classes that remain banned because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In May, Education Undersecretary Annalyn Sevilla said the agency allotted P2.4 billion from Bayanihan 2 to purchase laptops for some 68,500 personnel.
The DepEd has launched several projects, including the Public Education Network, to move toward online or technology-mediated learning.