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PIA Press Release
2008/10/28

EQuALLS2 donates books, educational materials to Mindanao's depressed schools

Koronadal City (28 October) -- The Education Quality and Access for Learning and Livelihood Skills (EQuALLS2) Project has organized the 1st EQuALLS2 Book Fair aimed at making the lives of teachers and students in depressed schools in select regions in Mindanao significantly better.

The book fair will open Tuesday at 8 o'clock in the morning at University Library, Notre Dame of Marbel University (NDMU).

The books which were donated by the Brother's Brother Foundation are intended for the schools in Region 9, 12, and the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM).

"EQuALLS2 has been finding ways to make the donated books from the Brother's Brother Foundation more relevant to the needs of schools in Regions 9, 12, and in ARMM," the organization said in a news statement.

The donated books serve as complementary educational materials for teachers and students.

One approach EQuALLS2 takes is identifying books that can be integrated into teacher trainings, it said.

EQuALLS2 believes that "by integrating the books into a training session, teachers are able to see and explore various ways they can use the books to complement their teaching."

Another approach, it revealed, which the teachers themselves suggested, is to make sure that a school/teacher/classroom gets multiple copies of a book.

According to teachers, EQuALLS2 further disclosed, that one advantage of having multiple copies of a particular book is that students can have their own copy even at the ratio of 2 students is to 1 book.

Based on this insightful feedback, EQuALLS2 organized its warehouses to group same title books together and bundle them in groups of 20-30 copies per title, Miriam Pahm, Director for Technical Programs, EQuALLS2 Project, said.

The book fair is expected to provide "teachers the opportunity to pick books" that may help strengthen their skills in delivering the best education to their students.

Some 300 teachers from Cotabato City, North Cotabato, Sarangani, South Cotabato, and Sultan Kudarat schools are expected to participate in the book fair.

The teachers' attendance will also enable them to avail their English Science Math (ESM) mentors training sessions.

"Teachers will be given time to shop for books on behalf of their schools at the book fair," Pahm said.

EQuALL2 also "made clear to teachers that the books are not for their personal use but must be shared with other teachers in their schools."

For the transport of the books that teachers selected, Petron under the Education Livelihood Skills Alliance (ELSA) has pledged to shoulder the cost of the transport of books to the different school beneficiaries.

Dr. Luz Almeda, regional director, Department of Education (DepED) Region 12 is elated for the book donation saying that it is timely for school children particularly in depressed areas and affected by armed skirmishes whose formal education has been temporarily halted. (PIA SarGen) [top]

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