Valenzuela to use Facebook Live, YouTube for distance learning

Katrina Domingo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 16 2020 06:50 PM | Updated as of Sep 16 2020 06:52 PM

A mother helps her daughter learn how to attend virtual classes in the Valenzuela Live Online Streaming School on July 9, 2020. Photo from the Valenzuela City Public Information Office

MANILA — The local government of Valenzuela will use Facebook Live and YouTube to deliver some lessons as the 2 social platforms are more accessible to learners in the northern Metro Manila city, Sen. Sherwin Gatchalian said Wednesday.

A survey showed that 90 percent of Valenzuela residents have access to Facebook, Gatchalian - who hails from Valenzuela and chairs the Senate Committee on Basic Education, Arts and Culturte - told reporters in an online press conference.

"When we asked our parents kung ano preferred nila.. about 90 percent said na may Facebook sila," said Gatchalian, whose brother Rex is mayor of Valenzuela City said.

Under the program, students in public schools in Valenzuela City will be required to watch lectures on Facebook Live along with with other Department of Education-prescribed audio-visual modules.

"'Yung matutununan (What they will learn) is the same. It's just that how we deliver is different," Gatchalian said.

"We will also upload the modules to YouTube and Facebook... Para 'yung bata kung kailangan panoorin ulit para maintindihan, puwede niya balik-balikan (so that when the students need to watch the lessons again to understand, they can go back)," he said.

The City Government of Valenzuela earlier said it would spend P69 million to put up the "Valenzuela Live Online Streaming School" to give their students a semblance of a "real classroom" while the country is still implementing a distance learning scheme due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Eighty percent of students in Valenzuela have access to internet-capable devices, but the city government has procured some 30,000 tablets for students who do not have their own gadgets, the senator said.

"In Metro Manila, connectivity is not an issue," Gatchalian said.

"We have to reduce the inequality between public and private schools. We're trying to reduce that by also providing gadgets [to poor students]," he said, noting that private school students have been learning through online classes.

The Senate Basic Education chair said he would "strongly suggest" for DepEd to also upload education programs they would produce on social media platforms, as these are more accessible to Filipinos.

DepEd earlier said that online, TV and radio modules would only be "supplementary" materials for public school students in the first grading period as the country does not have adequate internet infrastructure to enable all students to attend virtual classes.

A "cultural shift" also needs to be done in some households as there is still " low confidence in online and distance learning," the DepEd said.