THE Department of Education (DepEd) of Dumaguete City Schools Division has introduced the so-called "Academic Panda" to ensure limited physical interaction between and among students and teachers amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
City Schools Division Superintendent Gregorio Cyrus Elejorde confirmed that public schools will open classes for school year 2020-2021 on August 24, 2020 with an expected 22,483 student enrollees.
The number of enrollees is still growing, based on the records of the DepEd's online enrollment system.
In his presentation during the recent meeting of the City's Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases chaired by Mayor Felipe Antonio Remollo, Elejorde said this type of Panda application takes its cue from the Foodpanda services that allow ordinary residents to order food and supplies from comfort and safety of their homes.
Academic Panda allows stakeholders to select from the school any services like school forms, learning materials, and others via its mobile applications as well as their websites too.
The Panda of the schools processes and sends orders directly to the concerned stakeholders.
Elejorde said that to ease the fears of coronavirus transmission, learning will now be through online, modular or blended instructions and assessment.
Pure online learning can be delivered through systematic utilization of virtual interactions through Edmodo classroom and other platforms, which are preferred for students with internet subscription.
Modular learning involves reproduction of manuals, instructional and assessment materials in 280 kiosks throughout the city and in every school for students who have no smartphones nor electricity.
Blended learning, on the other hand, involves online instruction and reproduction of learning materials at the kiosks for easy collection and distribution for students with smartphones and use mobile data.
Elejorde informed the mayor that there is a significant increase in the number of enrollees as many students in the private schools have opted to transfer to the public schools.
It is estimated that the cost of logistics would amount to P21.1 million that includes reproduction costs of printed learning materials and manuals, kiosks (computers) and printers.
However, Project Teambayayong aims to cultivate partnerships, linkages and support from various stakeholders that can provide internet connection, computer sets, printers and other equipment to sustain the Materials Reproduction Kiosk and ensure access to learning materials by learners throughout the academic year at a reduced cost. (PIA)