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DepEd asks public to refer to guidelines on suspension of classes during bad weather

Sunday, June 26, 2011

The Department of Education  has called on the public especially parents to use as guide  the existing policies on suspension on classes  during bad weather condition to keep children out of harm.  

Based on to DepEd Order No. 28, series of 2005, classes in all public and private elementary and secondary schools are automatically suspended or cancelled without having to wait for announcement under the following circumstances:

When Signal No. 1 is raised by the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical & Astronomical Services Administration (PAG-ASA), classes at the pre-school level shall be automatically suspended in all public and private schools.

When Signal No. 2 is raised, classes at the pre-school, elementary and secondary levels shall be automatically suspended in all public and private schools.

In view of this, DepEd has requested PAG-ASA to reiterate these guidelines when issuing   regular weather bulletin so that the public can be duly-informed and can be better prepared.

In the absence of storm signals, localized suspension is allowed by DepEd. The decision may be made by the school principal, division superintendent or local government executive.

Secretary Armin Luistro reiterated that the parents, the local executives and the local DepEd officials are in the best position to decide if they will send their children to school when storm signals are announced by PAGASA in specific areas.

Existing policies allow local DepEd officials and local government executives to suspend classes at their level to avoid leaving children on the streets when heavy rains and strong winds hit certain areas.

 “The final decision to let the child go to school or not is left with the parents.  Local suspension and parental decision are allowed since parents and officials on the ground have a better idea about the situation in their areas,” explained Luistro.

 DepEd has also furnished media outfits with the guidelines which they can use to reiterate to the public during inclement weather.   



DepEd prepares for nationwide fun run for Rizal’s 150th birth anniversary

Monday, June 13, 2011

Preparations for the Department of Education’s simultaneous nationwide fun run on June 19 to celebrate the 150th birth anniversary of Dr. Jose Rizal are now in full swing.

“We all know how our national hero pushed for the education of the Filipinos and I am sure that a century after his death that remains his aspiration,” said Education Secretary Armin Luistro.

Instead of paying a registration fee, participants of the fun run are requested to bring donations or sign a pledge form to signify support for schools or to state what they can contribute to upgrade the standard of education in public schools. Completed forms will be submitted to the Local Registration Committee, where pledge forms/actual donations will be accounted for and turned over to the schools.

Participants have the choice of a 1-, 2-, or 3-kilometer walk or run. All the different divisions in the National Capital Region will have their fun run at the Quirino Grandstand in Luneta starting at 6:00 am.
DepEd, through its Adopt-a-School Program (ASP), will set up a booth for the acceptance of donations and the administration of the pledge form. This will be replicated in all the regional and division offices nationwide.

Donations-in-kind could be in the form of school supplies (pencils, ball pens, ruled paper, notebooks, crayons, chalk, etc.); classroom furniture (chairs, tables, cabinets, etc.); equipment (fax machine, computers, printers, electric fans, etc.); classrooms; or shop equipment (for Industrial Arts, Home Economics, Agri-Fishing, etc.).

Pledges could volunteer to provide service as a resource person for a particular subject; tutorial assistance; peer counseling; assistance to teachers (preparing visual aids, teachers’ aids); school maintenance and repairs; or teaching service.

According to Merlie Asprer, ASP Operations Manager, they are now receiving confirmation of participation to the fun run from the private sector. “Employees of a telecommunications company, for one, have agreed to pool resources and buy educational materials, which they will bring on June 19,” said Asprer.

Luistro expects the event to bring together education stakeholders in the spirit of fun and love for education. “This is a good physical exertion and at the same time an expression of compassion for our young learners who need our full support,” he explained.

The fun run will be spearheaded by all DepEd Division Offices (DOs) nationwide. All participating DOs will handle the preparatory work which shall include the organization of different committees to promote the activity as well as coordination with volunteers, sponsors and media.

More than 22 million public elementary and high school students trooped to public schools nationwide when classes opened last June 6.  This includes some 1.2 million kindergarten pupils who form the first batch of universal kinder students under the K to 12 basic education reform program of the Aquino Administration. Official figures show that more than one million new entrants to the public schools system is accepted by DepEd every year.



Educate Mozambique: Using Social media to educate a nation

Friday, June 10, 2011

Mozambique is rebuilding its education system starting from the ground up, quite literally. The country just initiated the launch of Educate Mozambique which is a broad and global online, social, mobile and offline campaign to both educate and crowd-source the world about the current situation faced by millions of school children in Mozambique. Educate Mozambique is a first of it's kind pro-active social media campaign run on behalf of an entire nation in Africa.

Click here to read more about this story.


How to Draw Storyboards

Wednesday, June 8, 2011


On using VMs in Class

Teaching Internet Technologies to a class of Computer Science students require that they set up their own servers. The servers are important so they can deploy their web applications in a real world setting, whilst ensuring that they get the skills of actually installing and maintaining a server. Some students are familiar with using a web hosting service, but I prohibit them from doing that for obvious reasons.

With a limited number of servers connected to the internet, the next best thing is to have a powerful enough server and run several virtual machines on it. IN our case, we use VMWare on Mac OS X and Linux and we virtualize Linux.

One thing good about using Linux is that you can have decent quality of service from limited resources. A Core 2 Duo Mac Mini Server is enough to support 5 Linux virtual machines without any performance penalties.

The configuration is simple -- 256MB RAM, one processor and 21GB of space is plenty for an Ubuntu server install. Note, however, that you must have the networking set to bridge, instead of using NAT. That way, each server gets an IP address that is on the same network as the main or host server.

If you are behind a firewall or a router, you need to map different ports on the router to forward to different ports on different VMs. For example, map router port 8001 to the VM port 80 will allow you to access the web server on the VM on that external port.

One last thing before transferring access to students is to make sure that all the VMs automatically start after the computer boots up. Now, you can leave the servers under the care of your students and let them configure and deploy their web apps.

If you need more VMs, you either get a more powerful server, or experiment on lowering the RAM on each VM. Remember that Linux server does not need that much RAM to act as web server.

Source: Manila Bulletin


Internet Access a Human Right: UN

Monday, June 6, 2011

Influenced by the role of social media in the recent Middle East uprisings, the United Nations is now saying internet access should be considered a human right, reports the LA Times.

In a report released last Friday, special rapporteur to the UN, Frank La Rue, said the “internet has become an indispensable tool for realizing a range of human rights, combating inequality and accelerating development and human progress, ensuring universal access to the internet should be a priority for all states”.

La Rue added that the internet is “one of the most powerful instruments of the 21st century”, referring to open and transparent governance. Where people face injustice, inequality and tight-fisted rule, the internet can play a “key role…in mobilizing the population”, La Rue said.

As such, the UN is urging governments that block internet access are "in contravention [of their] international human rights obligations" and should eschew those laws.

And because internet users tend to actively participate in a canon of content creation rather than being passive spectators, online platforms are an especially valuable tool in countries where there is no independent media, the UN said in its report.

“Such platforms enable individuals to share critical views and to find objective information,” the report read. “By enabling individuals to exchange information and ideas instantaneously and inexpensively across national borders, the internet allows access to information and knowledge that was previously unattainable.

“This, in turn, contributes to the discovery of the truth and progress of society as a whole.”


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