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PIA Press Release
2008/08/14

DepED-IX intensifies lingua franca education project

By Franklin P. Gumapon

Dipolog City (14 August) -- As a sequel to the successful implementation of the lingua franca education project since its inception in 1999, the regional office of the Department of Education (DepED) in region 9 led by officer-in-charge Dr. Walter O. Albos is now pushing for its continued implementation in selected schools all over the region.

Now dubbed "Mother Tongue-Based Multilingual Education (MTBME)" project, DepED-IX has sought to implement it in the schools divisions of Isabela City, Zamboanga City, Zamboanga del Norte, Zamboanga del Sur and Zamboanga Sibugay using selected mother tongues (MTs) like Cebuano, Chavacano, Yakan, Samal, Tausog and Subanen.

To acquaint the school officials and teachers of participating schools in the region with the MTBME project, an orientation activity was held recently at Nabilid Elementary School in Roxas, Zamboanga del Norte.

Nabilid Elementary School was one of the pioneering schools in the country that adopted the said project in 1999 with grade one pupils being taught their lessons in Cebuano for a semester.

After a few years of implementing the lingua franca program, the school head and the teaching staff of Nabilid Elementary School as well as the promotional staff of the Zamboanga del Norte schools division noted that the pupils who had undergone the program were able to learn faster the different concepts in all the learning areas. These pupils were also observed to have excelled in academic contests and showed excellent performances in the fields of journalism and sci-dama competitions even in the national level, according to the report of division English supervisor Lourma Poculan.

In its desire to expand the MTBME project throughout the region, DepED-IX has identified the following schools and the specific dialects to be used, namely: Spillway Elementary School of Isabela City division Tausog; Guisao Elementary School in Manicahan district of Zamboanga City division Chavacano; Taluksanay Elementary School in Mercedes district, also of Zamboanga City division Samal.

In the division of Zamboanga del Norte, Nabilid Elementary School in Roxas I district- Cebuano; Mandih Central School in Sindangan south district Subanen; Sibuco Central School in Sibuco district- Samal; Malambuhangin Elementary School in Siocon district Tausog; and Balunocan Elementary School in Siayan district Subanen.

Lapuyan Central School in Lapuyan district and Canipay Norte Elementary School, of Midsalip district, which all belong to the Zamboang del Sur schools division shall use the Subanen dialect.

In Zamboanga Sibugay schools division, Cebuano will be used in Coloran Elementary School of Siay district while Manlin Elementary School of Buug district will use the Subanen tongue.

MTBME is one of the special projects initiated by DepED's Bureau of Elementary Education (BEE). (PIA-ZN) [top]

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