DepEd-ARMM assists schools affected by Marawi crisis
Cotabato City (July 31, 2017) – The Education department of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (DepEd-ARMM) has drafted recovery programs and plans and has conducted initial damage assessment for schools adversely affected by the Marawi crisis.
Alfhadar Pajiji, DepEd-ARMM Assistant Secretary, said the department will be providing e-learning assistance, psychosocial first aid, and a feeding program for school children affected by the crisis.
Based on initial damage assessment, schools with buildings partly, or entirely, destroyed in the Marawi fighting are as follows: Ibango Elementary School, Marawi Pilot Central School, Dangcal Elementary School, Lower Dansalan Elementary School, Dansalan National High School, Raya Madaya Elementary School, Disomangcop Elementary School, Marinaut Central Elementary School, Banggolo Central Elementary School, and Madaya Lilod Elementary School.
Damage in those schools were initially estimated at P120 million. In pursuit of the recovery program, DepEd-ARMM and the region’s Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH-ARMM) signed a Memorandum of Agreement where the design and construction of school buildings was assigned to DPWH-ARMM, said Assistant Secretary Pajiji.
As of Thursday, July 27, DepEd-ARMM has been operating 11 Temporary Learning Spaces as alternative schools in six municipalities with 3,289 school children and 122 teachers. Based on current estimates, 132 schools with 22,714 students and 2,933 teachers have been affected by the Marawi crisis.
The e-learning assistance is a regular project of DepEd-ARMM under its computerization program intended for Geographically Isolated and Disadvantage Areas (GIDA). Secondary schools under GIDA have also been included in the current response to the crisis.
The department’s assistance to affected schools also includes solar panels with batteries to store power, seven tablets, and a laptop, said Assistant Secretary Pajiji. Distribution of hygiene kits, relief goods, food items, and medicine are also part of the initiative.
The department, in coordination with Gawad Kalinga, has dispensed hot meals to 1,000 school children last July 5. The feeding program is ongoing and as of Thursday, 2,800 have benefited from the program. The feeding initiative was reported as very successful during its initial intervention last month in Saguiaran, Lanao del Sur.
Aside from students, 1,400 teachers are also being provided with psychosocial first aid. “Ganoon din po yung plano natin sa ating mga teachers, because we are pretty sure also na hindi lang ang mga learners ang affected pati na rin ang mga guro,” the DepEd-ARMM official said.
Assistant Secretary Pajiji said DepEd-ARMM has been exerting efforts to ensure the welfare of the school children and teachers affected by the crisis. (Bureau of Public Information)