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34 LGUs cited for work in expanding education

Thirty-four cities and municipalities from Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao have been recognized for their outstanding efforts in improving the quality of basic education in their communities. 

Seventeen local government units were conferred the Seal of Good Education Governance. They are Bacnotan in La Union; Diadi, Sta. Fe, Solano, and Villaverde in Nueva Vizcaya; Diffun, Quirino; Navotas City and Valenzuela City in Metro Manila; Maribojoc, Bohol; Mambusao, Capiz; Concepcion, Lambunao, Leon, and Mina in Iloilo; Cagayan de Oro City; Datu Paglas, Maguindanao; and Bongao, Tawi Tawi.

The 17 others received the Jesse Robredo Award in Education Governance, named after the late interior secretary and longtime mayor of Naga City. They are Vigan, Ilocos Sur; Agoo, San Fernando, San Gabriel, and Santol in La Union; Dao and Ivisan in Capiz; Argao, Cebu; Ajuy, Alimodian, Cabatuan, Lemery, Maasin, and Miag-ao in Iloilo; General Santos City; Parang and Upi in Maguindanao.

Recipients of the Seal of Good Education Governance and the Jesse Robredo Award in Education Governance display their plaques in the awarding ceremony in Makati City. The latter award was named after the late interior secretary and longtime mayor of Naga City, whose widow—Vice President Leni Robredo (below)—delivered the keynote message.

All 34 LGUs met the Synergeia Foundation’s criteria for good education governance. To qualify, they must have reinvented their local school boards and organized functional school governing councils. The cities and municipalities must have also reduced the number of non-readers and frustrated readers in their locality by at least 20 percent.

Moreover, their cohort survival rate (the percentage of first graders who went on to sixth grade) must be higher than the national average of 80 percent or must have increased by at least two percentage points. The LGUs must have devoted an increasing amount of their budget to education.

Synergeia, a coalition of individuals and organizations working closely with LGUs, started giving the Seal of Good Education Governance last year to promote transparency, accountability, and excellence in the delivery of basic education by local governments.

It received 350 LGU nominations this year, higher than last year’s 250 submissions. 

This year’s results were deliberated upon by Synergeia trustees and representatives from PLDT, Smart Communications, and SGV Foundation. 

As an incentive to the Seal holders, PLDT and Smart will provide technology packages suited to the LGUs’ respective circumstances and needs. Among the possible incentives are:

Installation and maintenance of Smart Wifi in the LGU’s nominated university

Provision of InfoCast, a web-based solution that will allow the LGU to broadcast announcements and receive feedback via text message

Smart School-in-a-Bag, which contains a solar panel to serve schools without electricity, mobile devices, curriculum-based educational content, teacher training, monitoring, and evaluation 

All recipients of the Seal of Good Education Governance received smartphones and a cash prize from PLDT and Smart. 

On top of these, thousands of individuals from each of the 17 Seal recipients who will sign up for KasamaKA will get a free three-month micro-insurance coverage from FINTQ, the financial technology arm of PLDT-Smart digital unit Voyager Innovations. KasamaKA is a community-based, self-help, income-generating, and inclusive ecosystem-building movement.

“We at PLDT and Smart hope that these technology tools would help the country’s outstanding LGUs deliver quality education to their constituents. We recognize that tech solutions to challenges in education work only when major stakeholders pursue innovative learning programs,” said PLDT and Smart Public Affairs Head Ramon R. Isberto.

Topics: LGUs , Synergeia Foundation , basic education quality
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