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ALS Graduation in Atok, Benguet

November 23, 2007

The ALS project in Atok is situated in four barangays – Bonglo, Caliking, Colong and Naguey. Before the project start up, a community workshop previously held in summer of 2005 surfaced out the education gaps in Atok that needed to be addressed by ALS. Therefore, the partnership building that ensued was a follow-up and an effort made to address the identified education deficits.

In each of the barangays, PEPE and ABLE sought the cooperation of the barangay officials, who in the process, appreciated the initiative to create the foundations for advocacy and implementation of ALS in their area. These local government units helped PEPE in initially mobilizing the daycare workers and a few parents in targeting the sitio where ALS is most needed and the kind of intervention that is appropriate for the ALS learners identified.

Both in Naguey and Caliking, the LGUs and the people specifically requested for ALS for the out-of-school youth, one that is linked with developing livelihood skills. They suggested an ALS that is linked to more possibilities and what they are already doing in their life like key-chain making, farming, and that which will take away the shyness of the youth. The ALS identified for Bonglo and Colong are 1) mentoring/reading sessions based on cultural values and knowledge of the Kankana-ey for “slow learners” in Grades 1-4 which was very much welcomed by the parents during visits with them and in meeting with the head teacher of the Bonglo Elementary School; 2) community learning sessions for parents and teachers on child rearing, values, computer use and other life skills.

Mentoring in Bonglo and Colong started in February 2007 and continued until April which was conducted in Bonglo Elementary School and in Batan Elementary School-Colong Annex. After undergoing a series of trainings and reading workshops, eight local educators served as teachers for the sessions. On 4 May 2007, 91 pupils from both schools finished the course.

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