DILG says donated gadgets from LGUs should meet minimum specs from DepEd
MANILA, Philippines – Gadgets like laptops and phones that will be donated by local government units (LGUs) for distance learning modes are very much welcome, but must adhere to the minimum specifications set by the Department of Education (DepEd).
According to the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), expensive gadgets would only be for naught if these do not pass the standards for online classes, which will be the alternative to face-to-face learning due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We all want to help our schools, especially our teachers and learners, cope and adjust with the new normal in education brought about by the pandemic but we don’t want these expensive gadgets to go to waste,” DILG spokesperson and Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya said in a statement on Thursday.
“We must be sure that they will be utilized. Hence, we encourage our LGUs who are planning to donate ICT equipment to be guided by the technical specs given by DepEd when they make their donation,” he added.
Malaya said that Interior Secretary Eduardo Año has already released a directive stating the minimum qualifications of the gadgets, while advising LGUs not to install any software as these would be done by DepEd.
DILG’s memorandum said that for laptops, the processor’s speed must be at least 1.6 Gigahertz (GHz) with possible Turbo Speed; a screen size of 13, and must be capable of 1920 x 1080 pixels or Full HD with Anti-Glare LED-Backlit or IPS Techn010U; a random access memory of 8 gigabyte (GB); a SATA hard disk drive storage of 512 GB; and ability to connect to wireless local area networks using the 802.11 b/ g /n/ac Bluetooth configuration.
For tablets, these should have a Quad-core 1.3 GHz processor; a display area of 8 inches; resolution of 800 x 1280 Pixels; a physical storage of 32 GB; and capable of a 4G LTE (Optional, Preferred) Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n Bluetooth network.
For the case of smartphones, these should have Octa-core 2.0 GHz processors; a display size of 6 inches; a display type of IPS LCD Display; display resolution of 720 x 1520 Pixels; physical storage of 32 GB; network of GSM / HSPA / LTE Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n Bluetooth, and must have dual SIM capability.
Interested LGUs have to make a written agreement or a deed of donation with the Schools Division Office for proper recording and accountability.
Recently, President Rodrigo Duterte remained firm about the suspension of face-to-face classes until a vaccine for the coronavirus is discovered.
Because of this, DepEd is set to adapt a distance learning method to ensure that students still study despite the lockdown measures. However, one growing concern is the lack of adequate devices and unstable internet connections for some teachers and students.
Student group Samahan ng Progresibong Kabataan (Spark) warned on Thursday that the drop-out rates seen by DepEd — only 10.5 million enrollees out of 27.2 million students nationwide — will be bigger if the government does not provide ways for teachers and students to participate in distance learning schemes.
Due to the lack of available devices, Vice President Leni Robredo has initiated another donation drive, this time asking the public for old yet functioning gadgets, which will be given to teachers and students who do not have these items.
Duterte also vowed to purchase radios for people in the countryside, especially those who cannot be reached by electricity and internet connection.
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