Monday, December 18, 2017
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  • Integrated Mindanaons Association for Natives, Inc. (IMAN)

    Innovations for Rural Education Advancement (iREAd) Project for Moro Children in Mindanao
    To improve quality of education for Moro children in conflict-affected communities of Bangsamoro on literacy, numeracy, and essential life skills
    Barangays Pagagawan, Damakling and Baya in three municipalities of Maguindanao, Barangay Patadon in Kidapawan, North Cotabato and Barangay Pedtad, in Kabacan, Cotabato
    400 students (in-school: 250; off-school:150), and 25 teachers
    2 years

    In 2014, the Integrated Mindanaoans Association for Natives (IMAN) observed that most students graduating in Grade six (6) in Maguindanao and North Cotabato can hardly read and write due to a high rate of absenteeism. Based on IMAN’s more than a decade of community work, such rate of absenteeism was due to forced evacuation of families during continuing conflicts. Recurring power outages in the areas worsened the situation with frequent suspension of classes.

    In spite of absenteeism, the zero drop-out policy of local schools compels teachers to pass students just to meet their target. School facilities that are available for use is also limited. Students have to share desks or bring their own chairs when attending classes.

    USAID, through the Philippine-American Fund, supports IMAN in improving literacy, numeracy and essential life skills of Moro children in Bangsamoro communities. The project complements efforts of the Department of Education (DepEd) in improving access to quality education in selected areas affected by armed conflict. The main project approach includes strategic support to school and teacher development programs using technology-based instructional tools. Under the program, communities and other local stakeholders are also mobilized to support
    community learning centers. These are located off-school and utilize alternative delivery modes (ADM) of teaching instruction for displaced Moro children in the rural and conflict-affected communities.

    The school equipment for two project-assisted schools were turned over this quarter. The equipment included 30 computer tablets, one desktop computer, one LCD projector and printer.  A Memorandum of Understanding among IMAN, the schools and the barangays was signed to formalize the commitment of the project partners.

    Also during the quarter, IMAN conducted remedial classes for slow readers in two schools. The mechanics for the use of the tablet computers by 90 students in Patadon Elementary School were also discussed during the remedial sessions. The proposed scheme was to divide the students in three batches, which will have 30 students each. The first batch will use the tablet every Monday and Wednesday. The second batch on Tuesday and Thursday, while the third batch will use the tablets every Friday. Batch one and two students who were assigned from Monday-Thursday are slow readers and are given one hour per remedial class (two hours per week). The batch of students assigned on Friday are average readers and are given an hour per week of remedial sessions.

    The installation of solar power in the off-grid school covering the elementary schools of Baya, Pedtad and Langkuno was completed on Mar. 18, 2017. A full-system check is being conducted to ensure that solar power system installed meets the agreed requirement.

    Since the beginning of the project, IMAN was able to conduct six sets of workshop on the RESPECT model covering five target schools. A total of 548 students (54 percent girls) attended the workshops. These workshops are essential in developing life skills of students such as decision making and problem solving.

    The project also organized 68 sessions of ADMs in the five target schools. Post-test results showed increased scores in speed reading and reading comprehension. A total of 143 out-of-school children (47 percent girls) completed the program.