Programs to achieve education for all by 2015 pushed-A A +A
Wednesday, August 28, 2013
BARELY two years left before the deadline set to achieve the "education for all" target as stipulated in the Millennium Development Goals (MDG), local government units (LGU) have been exerting relentless efforts to address education woes that have been confronting the education sector for decades.
Such target has been defined during the United Nation sponsored Millennium Summit in September 2000.
At the summit, 192 participating countries, including the Philippines, and 23 international organizations, identified eight international development goals that they agreed to achieve by 2015. They called it the MDG, which embodies specific targets and milestones in eliminating extreme poverty worldwide.
Among these goals is to provide education to everyone -- giving each child access to education and achieve a zero dropout rate in each school.
In his first three-year term, General Santos City Mayor Ronnel Rivera has vowed to address unsolved problems that have continued to confront the education sector for decades, causing such sector to further decline and persistently neglected.
Rivera spearheaded the signing of the commitment of achieving Education for All (EFA) Goals in 2015, along with other education stakeholders during the first Education Summit held in the city on August 23.
In his speech during the summit, Rivera said that the education summit is just a "step towards achieving concrete and lasting reforms in the educational system of the city."
He said he organized the education summit, along with internal and external education stakeholders, to address the basic educational needs of the public schools in General Santos.
Rivera said he will tap privately-owned companies to engage in Public-Private Partnerships (PPP) with the LGU to aid possible projects on education as part of their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR).
During the summit students, teachers, principals, supervisors, Parents Teachers Association (PTA), non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and private partners were able to come up with recommendations and proposed solutions to recurring problems in the education sector.
Participants such as the group of student councils from different schools in the city are grateful to the education summit because it gave them the assurance that the local government and Department of Education (DepEd) are taking actions to advance the education in the city.
Diosdado Ablanido, schools division superintendent, said DepEd would want to come up with a "systematic program" that will sustain the envisioned educational reforms.
Rivera assured the attendees of the summit that the results and recommendations of all the stakeholders along with the proposed EFA program will be incorporated in the city's Executive-Legislative Agenda (ELA).
Some of the common issues that were identified in the EFA Goals in 2015 are the lack of educational facilities, increasing rate of dropouts, low score percentage in National Achievement Test (NAT), teachers' competence and the "No Collection Policy."
Councilor Rosalita Nuñez, head of the city’s Committee on Education, said the current administration is serious in solving the issues of the educational system in the city.
"We are eager to listen to the people that are directly involved in education," she said.
The long-term goal, according to Nuñez and Rivera, is to propel the educational situation of the city so that students can be more competitive on the national level.
Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on August 28, 2013.