Anchored on DepEd’s mission to protect and promote the right of every Filipino to quality, equitable, culture-based and complete basic education, new public schools shall be established in 39 sites in Region X to serve indigenous learners in Northern Mindanao beginning school opening in June 2016 onwards.

In a meeting called by Regional Director Allan G. Farnazo on March 1, 2016 at the Regional Office Conference Hall, he discussed comprehensively the details of the Memorandum sent by the Central Office to all RDs of Region IX, X, Xl, XII, and XIII regarding the establishment of new school sites. The sites for this Region were identified through the recommendation of the Division IP Coordinators and Regional IP Ed Focal Person Josephine L. Valledor of the Curriculum and Learning Management Division (CLMD), Regional Office. The sites are in the Divisions where IP learners are found specifically in the Divisions of Bukidnon,  Malaybalay City, Valencia City,   Iligan City, and  Gingoog City.

On classroom construction, RD addressed all DepEd Engineers to see a different approach that conforms to the standard of the community, consistent with the religious and cultural beliefs. In addition, naming of these newly-established schools have to be “ preferably in the indigenous language that is culturally and /or historically meaningful to the community.”

Along with these are the need for 82 classrooms which shall be implemented in partnership with the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Kalahi-CIDSS National Community-driven Development Program (NCDDP). The newly-created schools shall offer culture-based basic education in the context of IPs, consistent with the goals of the K to 12 Basic Education Program.

All schools were directed to place their school ID on the roof in order to be captured in the Google map. Those with “nipa” and “cogon roofing” would certain to have their ID visible. Chief Allan L. Mansaladez of the Policy, Planning and Research Division was directed to ensure that all schools have IDs to facilitate the inclusion of school MOOE budget in the next budget cycle.

On the other hand, hiring of 82 teachers corresponds to the number of the target classroom-need.  These teachers shall undergo orientation and training on IPEd and on the contextualization of the curriculum. When all these IP schools are set, all Divisions are challenged to connect with local colleges and universities on curriculum and instruction-related matters. Higher Education Institution whose teachers are not doing actual classroom teaching because of the transition period are mandated to work on research like local orthography of education, stories and inventories to assist DepEd.

Chief Shambaeh A. Usman of the Curriculum and Learning Management Division (CLMD) processed all the  discussions of the Regional Director. She reminded all Divisions on the actionable and deadlines which include the creation of Task Force to focus on the requisites for the establishment of IP schools. She reiterated the need to  have Division Documenters  to record the  Most Significant Change (MSC)  on IP concerns and submit this to the Regional Office for an important milestone. Regional Office Documenter is Angelina B. Buaron, Education Program Supervisor in English.

Chief Noe Simene provided tasks to all DepEd engineers to work with IP elders on the design of the learning center,  to coordinate with DSWD, LGU and other partners; and for the Task Force to assist the preparation of documents. Chief Roy C. Evangelista of the Quality Assurance Division itemized the documents to be submitted per DO 40, s. of 2016. Some adjustments were made to the required documents to hit the target of compliance before the set deadline on March 10, 2016.

After the meeting, all Regional and Division IP Coordinators stayed at the Learning Materials Development Center (LRMDC) to deliberate on the next steps facilitated by EPS Valledor.