Distance learning has given a totally new aspect to the saying, it takes a village to raise a child, now it takes that much resources to educate a child. The challenge is not just on how lessons are to be given when there can be no face-to-face interaction. For many school officials, the bigger challenge involves managingthe limited resources.
“We worry about not being able to print modules on time,” said Normita Manalac, principal at Mancatian Elementary School in Porac, Pampanga.
Her counterparts in Payocpoc Sur and Calumbaya Elementary Schools in Bauang, La Union expressed the same concern. “Printers issued to teachers have a ratio of 3 to 1 so the teachers are forced to use their personal printers just to be on time on their scheduled distribution. (Our supply of) bond paper and ink is also limited that is why teachers have to use personal funds and solicit help from stakeholders, LGU, alumni, friends and relatives,” said Josephine Hipona, principal of Calumbaya Elementar School in Bauang.
Public schools rely on their maintenance and other operating expenses (MOOE) for essential expenses. Often the amount they get monthly is not enough to pay for repairs and supplies, let alone for the purchase heavy duty photocopying machines or printers.
Realizing the need of the public schools under the distance learning program, the Vivant Group donated printers and photocopying machines, bond paper and ink toners. A simple turnover was held separately in the three schools in September and in October.
“We are grateful for the opportunity to help ensure the safety of our children as they continue their studies in these trying times caused by COVID-19,” said Vivant Foundation Executive Director Shem Jose W. Garcia. “At Vivant Foundation, we consider uplifting the public education system in the country a priority. Our programs are focused on improving STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) but when we learned of the challenges that teachers and parents have had to face under distance learning, we had to pitch in to help our communities adapt to the changes brought by the pandemic.”
“The help from Vivant is a blessing from above. With their donation, we can reproduce the modules in less time. We don’t worry anymore about how to produce the modules,” Manalac said.
Hipona said that with Vivant’s donation of a multi-function printing machine, bond paper and ink allows the school to allot its MOOE on other essential expenses. Calumbaya Elementary School has 571 enrolles as of October, Payocpoc Sur has 420, while Mancatian ES has a student population of 742. That’s a total of 1,733 students who are able to receive their modules on time and get the education they need and deserve.