DepEd eyes release of connectivity allowance by next year

Jaehwa Bernardo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Nov 12 2020 06:27 PM

Rachel Senolos assists her two sons, grade 5 student Billy John Salvane and grade 2 student Neil John Salvane, in their online classes on October 5, 2020. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

MANILA – The Department of Education said Thursday it was planning to provide public school teachers and senior high school students with “connectivity allowance” by next year.

Education Secretary Leonor Briones has requested P4 billion from the Department of Budget and Management, of which P3.6 billion will be used to cover load allowances for 3.2 million senior high learners and around 900,000 teachers nationwide, the DepEd said in a statement.

Once granted, each teacher will receive P450 load allowance while senior high students will get P250 per month for 3 months, the DepEd said.

“We recognize the importance of load allowance for our learners and teachers to deliver quality education despite these challenging times due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” Briones said.

The remaining P400 million will be used for the printing and delivery of self-learning modules, production of materials for DepEd’s online and broadcast platforms, and establishment of 2,000 radio transmitters in last-mile schools, the department said.

Education Undersecretary Alain Pascua added that the DepEd was exploring more ways to support distance learning by engaging with telecommunication companies in the country.

In the past months, various groups have called on the DepEd to provide internet access allowance for teachers and students as they have incurred higher communication expenses with the shift to blended learning.

Educators and students have been using the internet to participate in online classes, one of the components of distance or blended learning, which schools are implementing this year due the coronavirus pandemic.

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