Valenzuela City’s local education channel wins 3rd Place in the Best in eGOV Customer Empowerment (G2C) – Cities Category in this year’s virtual awarding ceremony of the Digital Governance Awards by the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT), the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), and the National ICT Confederation of the Philippines (NICP), October 29.
The City Government of Valenzuela is not a newcomer in the digital award as it already won 1st place with last year’s Paspas Permit winning as the Best in Business Empowerment (G2B) Award also cited with a Huawei Special Award and ValTrace as Best in COVID-19 Response (G2P) for the Cities Category.
Taking the driver’s seat
With a foresight on difficulties in internet connection, gadgets, module and online learning, and the readiness of its school system, Valenzuela City sees this hurdle as an opportunity to take the driver’s seat in crafting education programs for the new normal.
Valenzuela LIVE came about with the local government understanding that in the new normal setup, it is not just parents and students who are gradually adjusting to online learning but rather, teachers and administrators are equally sharing the heavy load of ensuring that every student will be able to catch up with the lessons – crafting lessons and “education products” that are localized, standardized, synchronized, and accurate for all of its students.
“We created this program because we want it to somehow synchronize with the national government framework but at the same time we are tailor fitting it to what the LGU learners need. All the materials are contextualized and all the materials are localized para mas madaling intindihin ng mga bata ‘yung kontekstong itinuturo ng ating mga teachers (so the contents taught by our teachers can be easily understood by students),” Mayor REX Gatchalian said.
With carefully curated contents through standard modules across the division and videos that are delivered, streamed, and conceptualized by its local talent pool of live streaming teachers, moderators, and technicians, Valenzuela LIVE also converted classrooms at the Valenzuela School of Mathematics and Science (VALMASCI) to become studios for live sessions.
Sessions are scheduled on Facebook Live twice a week and are streamed on the Facebook groups of subject teachers with their students, where follow-up discussions are also conducted.
Videos are uploaded to the Valenzuela LIVE website through the Department of Education (DepEd) Valenzuela. These are also saved in a shared cloud folder and uploaded through Youtube which maximizes all the free platforms the LGU can use and for students to easily access.
“Rather than what we see in other LGUs wherein teachers are allowed to run their own programs and own live feed, Valenzuela City did everything in a centralized manner… Basically, Valenzuela LIVE is a template to centralize things, it is a template to standardize things,” Mayor REX adds.
Valenzuela LIVE videos are also being generously shared by the City to other LGUs who are grappling with the delivery of their own online learning modalities, expanding its positive impacts to other LGUs for the program to be sustained and replicated. The program also boasts a multi-character approach by putting teachers, parents, students, and the local government in the package of providing the best and quality education for students through assessments.
Additionally, the City Government of Valenzuela coupled Valenzuela LIVE with student assessments through tapping into the private sector to help with the research and development (R&D) aspect of the program to assess the students’ learning competencies. Valenzuela City and DepEd Valenzuela were able to track and measure results of student performance and were also able to customize contents and videos to address the needs for improvement of its learners.
Mayor REX proudly shares, “It is the country’s only and first locally produced education content for standardized learning across the division. Our goal was to come up with a program that is not school-specific but rather division-specific… We are proud of Valenzuela LIVE because we were able to come up with our own channel and our own content that is paired with the modules that the local DepEd is churning out.”
Valenzuela LIVE was conceptualized as early as April 2020 when the community quarantine was imposed in Luzon including the National Capital Region (NCR). Before its launch last October 05, 2020, the City Government and DepEd Valenzuela conducted numerous live simulations and consultations with students, parents, and teachers, to effectively identify what needs to be improved before the program launch.
Valenzuela LIVE is still being heavily utilized by the entire division and maximizes 18 studio classrooms with 451 live streaming teachers catering to around 120,400 learners in Valenzuela City. 23,500 tablets were also lent to students from the poorest of the poor sector.
Aside from Valenzuela LIVE, the City is still consistent with its holistic Education 360 Degrees Investment Program by providing free school kits to 82,215 Kinder to Grade 6 students as an annual tradition. Its School-Based Feeding Program benefited 11,108 Kinder students and underweight students from Grades 2 to 6, and 65,160 Grade 7 to 12 students also received their free notebooks from the city government – all of these were done by Valenzuela City even during the pandemic.