Press Release
November 28, 2011


Senator Edgardo J. Angara called on the Department of Education (DepEd) to build on gains already made in providing Internet access in public high schools to improve the standards of education in the country.

Angara, Chair of the Senate Committee on Education, Culture and the Arts, made the statement as the private sector-led program Gearing Up Internet Literacy and Access for Students (GILAS) was mainstreamed and turned over to the DepEd.

The veteran lawmaker noted that since it began in 2005, the multi-stakeholder initiative GILAS has provided Internet access to 4,683 public high schools. Some 2,224 high schools have yet to be connected however.

"The DepEd deserves support for its efforts to link up all public high schools to the web by 2012. Having made substantial inroads, it should now start using the ICT infrastructure in place to scale up e-learning projects and make our educational system world-class," said Angara.

DepEd Secretary Armin Luistro told the media that around P1.8 billion of the proposed 2012 budget will be devoted to completing the connectivity of public high schools.

Angara noted that in 2008, the DepEd launched a five-year Information and Communication Technology for Education (ICT4E) strategic plan.

The plan broadly deals with how the department would manage key areas as ICT-enabled Curriculum, Multimedia Instructional Materials Development, and ICT-enabled Assessment for Educational Purposes.

"Current developments show that we are moving closer to connecting all of our schools to the Internet. But this is only one step in the bigger plan to improve our educational system," explained Angara, who authored landmark education-related bills such as the Free High School Act, and the law creating the Commission on Higher Education (CHED).

He continued, "Now, we can start paying more attention on how ICT should be used for improving the educational experience of both our learners and our teachers."

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