DepEd hosts webinars on child protection as schools shift to remote learning

Jaehwa Bernardo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 08 2020 12:08 PM

MANILA - The Department of Education said Tuesday it was holding a series of webinars on child protection for parents and teachers as learning moves away from classrooms and into students' homes during the coronavirus pandemic.

The 14-part webinar series will be conducted throughout September and on the first week of October, the DepEd said in a statement.

"It aims to capacitate school leaders, teachers, and parents on child rights in education, child protection in education in the time of COVID-19, and positive discipline in education for parents and guardians," the department said.

The DepEd has partnered with the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), Stairway Foundation, and Save the Children Philippines for the webinars, which will be streamed on the agency's Facebook page.

The first session was held Monday with children's rights in education and development as topics. The succeeding webinars will be streamed on September 8, 14, and 15.

Episodes on positive discipline will be streamed on September 9, 16, 23 and 30, and October 7. Children protection sessions, meanwhile, will be held from September 28 to October 2.

UNICEF Philippines earlier urged the government to train health, education and child services staff on COVID-19-related child protection risks, which include prevention of sexual exploitation and abuse.

In May, reports of online sexual exploitation of children in the Philippines spiked by over 260 percent during the coronavirus lockdown, according to the Department of Justice.

Some students have also fallen victim to sexual exploitation as they struggle to get gadgets for distance learning.