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PIA Press Release

BALS Ifugao bares 2009 accomplishments

by Dan B. Codamon

Lagawe, Ifugao (16 January) -- The Bureau of Alternative Learning System (BALS) that implements two major non-formal education program namely the Functional Education and Literacy Program (FELP) and the Continuing Education Program (CEP) bares its accomplishments for the year 2009.

Arsenio Yongoyong, the Provincial Coordinator of BALS-Ifugao said that 2009 was a very challenging and inspiring year for them as it enabled them to apply to the fullest the limits of their capabilities and were able to discover other realities of the program inspiring them to be more committed in the implementation of their programs.

He said that in cognizance of the Education for All (EFA) program of the government, the BALS program and projects in Ifugao were massively implemented in the eleven municipal districts of the province.

Because of this, 12 full time District ALS Coordinators (DALSC) were designated to oversee and monitor the implementation of the ALS program in their respective districts and were required to handle one or two classes.

In addition, seven Mobile Teachers (MT) items were also added to the existing five MTs who conduct classes were target learners are available by incorporating skills and livelihood trainings to the learners in order that they will be productive in their families.

As a result they were able to conduct the Philippine Education Placement Test (PEPT) with a total of 138 registrants, increased the percentage of passers in the Accreditation and Equivalency (A and E) test of students, organized 9 classes funded by the local government units, established two semi-permanent learning centers in Hingyon and Kiangan districts, registered 45 elementary and 694 secondary applicants in the A and E test of which nineteen elementary and 464 secondary actually took the A and E examination.

The BALS program was able to organize 22 Basic Literacy Program (BLP) and A and E classes and 23 classes under the Mobile Teaching Program, implemented four classes for indigenous people in Mayoyao and conducted mapping target for every district ALS beneficiary.

BALS-Ifugao was able to enroll 635 students under the BLP and 1,150 under the A and E program composed entirely of indigenous people.

Yongoyong however narrated that they encountered problems along the way which include poor support by school administrators in the implementation of ALS program, absenteeism of learners since most of them are bread earners, no items for full time district ALS Coordinators, lack of computers in the district ALS offices, difficulty in gathering learners in one setting, delayed release of A and E test results and lack of awareness of some Public School District Supervisors about the ALS program.

He recommends that the ALS advocacy and social mobilization among the implementers be strengthened, skills and livelihood should be conducted to get the interest of the learners, training seminars to all school heads and mobile teachers regarding ALS and implementation strategies, provision of computer sets to the district ALS offices, early release of A and E exam results and the creation of items for full time ALS Coordinators.

This is to fully realize the objectives of the ALS program which are the basic literacy aimed at eradicating illiteracy among out-of-school-youths and adults by developing basic literacy skills in reading, writing and numeracy, mobile teaching that deliver basic educational services to the depressed, deprived and underserved, provide education for all to the less fortunate members of society and functional literacy by infusing literacy with livelihood skills training.

It can also provide continuing education to the functional literacy completers, high school dropouts as well as adults who wish to re-enter the formal school system or engaged in technical-vocational courses for better occupational employment opportunities and the A and E program will provide an alternative learning pathway for out-of-school-youth and adults who are basically literate but who have not completed the 10 years of basic education mandated by our Philippine Constitution outside the formal school system. (PIA-Ifugao) [top]

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