In a move to level up the implementation of Department of Labor and Employment’s Tulong Panghanapbuhay sa Ating Disadvantaged/Displaced Workers (TUPAD), Valenzuela City kicks off sessions of Reading Tutor Program at different schools in the City, November 2, 2022.

The Office of Congressman REX Gatchalian in partnership with the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) held the contract signing and orientation of some 365 Reading Tutors from Pamantasang Lungsod ng Valenzuela (PLV) fourth- and third-year students on the same day of PLV’s 20th Founding Anniversary Celebration on October 25.

Latest TUPAD beneficiaries are not the conventional DOLE’s emergency employment where community service such as street sweeping, canal cleaning, and the like are the deployment, as Cong. REX said, “Tayo rito sa Valenzuela… we’ll use your brain power more than the physical… This is going to be the start of many tutoring brigade, kayo ‘yung first ever reading tutor brigade natin.” [Here in Valenzuela City… we’ll use your brain power more than the physical… This is going to be the start of many tutoring brigade, you’ll be our first ever reading tutor brigade.]

There are a total of 1,342 learners who TUPAD volunteers target for the city-wide teaching program. As from the last Reading Camp conducted by the City Government, there were almost 8,000 students who were assessed as non-readers and frustrated level readers, and by the end of the camp, there were about 1,432 students who remained as non-readers and frustrated level readers.

The Reading Tutor Program proceedings was detailedly discussed by DepEd’s Curriculum Implementation Division. Filmore R. Caballero, Chief Education Supervisor, tackled the importance of communicating with the reading coordinator and school principal for the tutors to be aware of the condition of their students, this will be the tutor’s first order of business. Subsequently, an attendance and baon check is highly instructed by Cong. REX, to ensure that the PhP 3,000 DSWD’s Assistance to Individuals in Crisis Situations (AICS) program agreement with the parents are utilized well. Tutors will also submit a documentation report at the end of the program.

Reading Tutors Program
The Reading Tutor Program Kicks-off : A Student-volunteer from the Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Valenzuela (PLV) tutors student learners who struggle to read and who lack comprehension during the kick-off sessions of the 20-day Reading Tutor Program, November 2, 2022. An initiative of the Office of the Congressman REX Gatchalian, the Congressman utilized Department of Labor and Employment’s Tulong Panghanapbuhay sa Ating Disadvantaged/Displaced Workers to help fight illiteracy and also help the student-tutors with their academic needs. COVID-19 pandemic has affected many students with their education. Beforehand, student-tutors underwent training seminars conducted by the Synergeia Foundation to ensure that they are ready to give quality education to the students. The 1300 parents also received Php 3000 Financial Assistance through the Department of Social Welfare and Development – Assistance to Individuals in Crisis Situation program (DSWD-AICS) to help provide allowance to the student-beneficiaries in taking care of their nutritional needs. (Clinton Ramos, Photo/Text)

DOLE’s TUPAD and DSWD’s AICS are the two (2) national programs combined by Cong. REX, which gave birth to the first ever Reading Tutor Program in the country. Other cities will also carry the program out, hence Valenzuela City is prominent for pioneering this comprehensive cause.

Synergeia Foundation conducted the Training for Reading Tutors to equip them with teaching strategies, such as curriculum planning, assessment, and reporting. Dr. Milwida “Nene” Guevarra, Program Director of Synergia Foundation, spearheaded the training on October 27.

Cong. REX noted that, “Sa Valenzuela, at sa bayan natin, literacy is a problem… that’s why we innovated… Kung iaasa [lang] natin during school hours ang learning, walang mangyayari… Tayo dapat ang solusyon.” [In Valenzuela City, and in our country, literacy is a problem… that’s why we innovated… If we’ll only rely during school hours, nothing will happen… We must be the solution.]

He then thanked Synergeia Foundation who provided the Reading Camp content support and training. At the same time, Cong. REX added that due to pandemic and distance learning, there have been a regression in learning, “The mission is to make sure na mahabol natin sila at wala tayong maiiwanan, para by the end of this year, dapat lahat sila nasa instructional level or independent readers na.” [The mission is to make sure that we attend to students, and no one will be left behind, so that by the end of this year, they will all be on instructional level, or all are independent readers.]

Reading tutors from PLV are deployed on fourthy two (42) elementary schools within Valenzuela City and each will monitor and teach no more than five (5) students. Some will handle two or three students in the next twenty (20) days. Reading Tutors are set to work for 20 days. It’s the longest that TUPAD emergency employment had to date. The salary is equivalent to the minimum wage in the National Capital Region (NCR), or PhP 11,400 for a twenty-day work.

Dr. Nene Guevarra conducted recitations and demo teaching to test the tutors’ stock knowledge and creativity. Memorization of the Filipino alphabet were taken seriously. The importance of teaching the proper sounds first and mastering it, interactive reading exercises that includes singing and dancing are also highlighted. More activities are carried on such as charades to practice body gestures, on-the-spot poetry writing, and creative teaching styles.

They are scheduled to work from November 2 to November 29, from 8:00 am to 12: 00 nn. This is also the first batch of TUPAD beneficiaries to receive no weekend duty, and salary benefits will continue even on holidays.

TUPAD recipients will receive their salary through money remittance Palawan Express after complying with DOLE Regional Office requirements, such as TUPAD ID, valid government ID, and DTR or Daily Time Record.

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