More than 40 key teachers with their school heads and Department of Education Naga City Division officials convened at the Regent Hotel in Naga City, Camarines Sur for the Consultative Conference for Open High School and other Special Programs on April 12, 2019. The conference main objective was to revisit the guidelines and determine the concerns and preparedness of secondary schools for Open High School and other DepEd Special Programs.

Jarme D. Taumatorgo, Alternative Delivery Mode Coordinator, was the lead convener and facilitator of the event via Division Memorandum no. 96 s. 2019 issued by Schools Division Superintendent William E. Gando, CESO VI. As project proponent, Taumatorgo, stressed the need of every school to offer special programs to cater learners with special needs and skills and to ultimately decongest CSNHS.

Acting Asst. Schools Division Superintendent Sueňo Luzada Jr., speaking on behalf of Superintendent Gando, likened this consultative conference as “getting the sap from the grain”. During the orientation he expressed optimism that the proposed special programs will ultimately benefit Naga City learners and the community in general.

Resource speakers were Cam. Sur National HS Principal Sulpicio Alferez III. MAPEH Coordinator Joseph Condeno and Cararayan National High School’s Open High School Program (OHSP) coordinators Adelaida Diezmo and Ma. Teresita Rentoy.

CID Chief Lynn Z. Padillo, happily announced that the Achievement Test for Grade Six and Basic Education Exit Assessment for SHS garnered higher ratings than the previous. But attaining the target proficiency of 75% remains a challenge and assured her office is ready to assist the schools offering the special programs and curricula.

At the open forum, principals of Carolina National High School and Naga City School of Arts and Trades raised concerns and issues relative to open high school program which Jarme Taumatorgo , ADM Coordinator addressed by proposing to reinforce the screening procedure to accommodate only legitimately qualified recipients of the special programs.

At the workshop, conference participants assessed on the readiness of their respective schools to offer OHSP (in terms of personnel and logistics capabilities). And what can be done to improve that level of readiness.

Text and Photos: BING VILLAROSA and IRMA AGRAVANTE-DE JESUS, CSNHS