By Raydes B. Barcia
Legazpi City —Tools for children with disabilities is being developed by the Department of Education (DepEd) in Bicol in partnership with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) to help learners in Albay province.
The USAID through the U.S. Peace Corps partnered with the Department of Education (DepEd) in Bicol to develop and test new assessment tools for learners with disabilities in Albay to provide quality education amid pandemic.
Dr. Norma Samantela, Albay Schools division superintendent lauded the U.S. Peace Corps and USAID for their collaboration and support for the country’s education specifically for learners with disabilities.
“By investing in inclusive education in the Philippines, you are investing in something life-changing for learners with disabilities,” Samantela said.
Students in Albay test the U.S. Peace Corps and Department of Education’s new assessment tools for learners with disabilities.
The initiative was funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), involving 40 teachers and 200 students from Albay as part of a series of activities that aim to ensure schools and their curricula are as inclusive as possible.
“Inclusive education is a priority for DepEd and the U.S. Peace Corps, and our shared aim is to ensure that all learners, including learners with disabilities, receive a quality education,” U.S. Peace Corps Philippines Country Director Jenner Edelman said.
The U.S. Peace Corps is the U.S. government’s premier American volunteer service organization.
Throughout the pandemic, U.S. Peace Corps staff, rather than American volunteers, have been supporting DepEd and other Philippine government partners in achieving their development priorities.
The US Embassy in a statement said that as the Philippines is at low risk for COVID-19, U.S. Peace Corps volunteers are scheduled to return to the Philippines in January 2023.
It said that more than 9,300 American Peace Corps volunteers have served alongside host communities across the Philippines over the past 60 years.