62 students from Bicol region are DepEd’s first SHS graduates under ALS program
MANILA, Philippines — A total of 62 students from the Bicol Region were the Department of Education’s (DepEd) first set of Senior High School (SHS) graduates under its Alternative Learning System (ALS) program.
In a statement on Friday, the DepEd said most of the graduates are “breadwinners and single parents who had to stop attending school to put the needs of their families first.”
DepEd Secretary Leonor Briones commended the graduates for being the first SHS graduates of the agency’s ALS program which caters to Filipino out-of-school children in special circumstances, youth, and adults (OSCYA).
“For many out-of-school youth and adults, ALS Senior High School is the completion of non-formal education. For DepEd, it is the fulfillment of its major priority,” Briones said during the virtual graduation ceremony.
The DepEd said the 62 ALS SHS graduates are from its pilot schools Ligao City National High School in the Division of Ligao City, Nursery High School in the Division of Masbate City, Federico A. Estipona Memorial High School in the Division of Masbate Province, and Tabaco National High School in the Division of Tabaco City.
Meanwhile, DepEd Region V Director Gilbert Sadsad also expressed his admiration over the success of the graduates and for “not giving up” despite the pressing situation.
“I wish to extend my thanks for not giving up on your schooling, for not losing hope amid the chaos. As pioneer graduates of this hybrid and enhanced ALS curriculum, you have raised the bar of the Alternative Learning System. History will remember you that you are brave, courageous, and determined graduates under a unique and difficult new normal,” Sadsad said.
In 2019, the DepEd mandated the inclusion of the SHS level in the ALS Program, which is equivalent to Grades 11 and 12 in the formal education system.
The DepEd said this “ensures that all ALS learners will be equipped with competencies required for employment, entrepreneurship, middle-level skills, and tertiary education.” — Sofia Vertucio, trainee
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