The Department of Education (DepEd) Schools Division Palawan (SDP) will do “bridging programs” for upcoming Grades 7 and 11 to prepare them for the next school year and to reduce the chances of more students dropouts.

The program will be done to ensure the students are prepared to enter the next grade level since the mastery was compromised due to the suspension of classes because of extracurricular activities and recently, COVID-19, said division information officer Grace Estefano.

“Ito ay para mai-prepare sila sa next grade level, lalo na dahil na-compromise ang mastery dahil sa suspension of classes. Ang success indicator nito ay tataas ang participation, bababa yong dropouts for Grade 7 and Grade 11. Halimbawa Grade 6 papasok na sila sa junior high and from Grade 10 magiging senior high na. Kung hindi sila well-equipped for the competencies na kailangan doon, maaapektuhan din ‘yong pag-aaral na prerequisite sa higher grade,” she said.

Estefano said the bridging program is needed because transitioning from elementary to junior high school and the latter to senior high calls for great academic and social adjustment for the learners as these are the different key stages in the K to 12 with standards and competencies that differ from each other.

The following are the aims of the bridging program:

  • Enhance the capacity of junior and senior high school entrants to be successful in the first year of the key stage;
  • Equip incoming grade 7 and 11 learners with competencies and skills necessary for the key stage;
  • Guide the learners in learning on their own using various modes of learning delivery;
  • Improve the academic performance of the learners when they enter Junior and Senior high school thereby contributing to the achievement indicators of the entire Schools Division, and
  • Ensure that grade 7 and 11 entrants will stay in school thereby reducing drop-out rate and school leaver rate of the Division.

Estefano added that the program will be conducted from June 1 to July 17, before classes resume on August 24.

The program will last for 6 weeks and the classes will be from Monday to Friday.

For online and face-to-face instructions, classes will have 6-hours for each day while for modular instruction, the teacher will meet the learners every Monday in school or at home for distribution and checking of modules and will have the rest of the week to answer the self-instructional modules.

The Bridging Classes will focus on the competencies in the last 2 weeks of the 4th Quarter of Grades 6 and 10 and other competencies essential in learning and the competencies for the higher year they will be entering. The subjects covered are English, Filipino, Science, and Mathematics.

As to the mode, Estefano mentioned that the process of learning in the bridging program will also be multi-modal.

The classes can be conducted as modular, online, face-to-face or a combination of these depending on the health situation in the school community and availability of required materials, equipment and facilities in each.

“Multi-modal learning din ang gagawin sa bridging program, puwedeng modules, online o kaya kung ano pa ‘yong pwedeng gamitin basta ang importante ay maturuan ‘yong mga bata noong mga competencies na hindi nila nakuha. Magtuturo ang mga teachers at i-aassess din nila kung ang naituro nila ay nakuha ba o hindi,” Estefano said.

The learners will be assessed based on the following:

  • Written Work- Objective Test (preferably multiple choice but may use other types like alternative response type, simple recall, matching type, etc.) – 30%
  • Performance Task- Essay, Insights, Reflections, Journal- 50%
  • End of the Bridging Assessment Objective Test with Essay or Reflection- 20%

The school heads are responsible for assigning of the teachers who will facilitate the Bridging Classes.

Teachers in English, Math, Science, and Filipino can expect to be assigned to facilitate the bridging. However, the school head may assign other teachers like Master Teachers or Head Teachers. Teachers with health conditions and other concerns that may conflict with the implementation of the Bridging Classes shall not be included in the options.

Teachers who will facilitate the bridging classes shall earn service credits.

She cleared that the bridging program is different from the summer classes, summer classes are intended for learners who failed some of their subjects from the previous school year and they must coordinate with their schools to enjoined in the summer class.

“Iba pa ‘yong summer class sa bridging program, ‘yong summer class naman ay para sa mga batang bumagsak sa mga subjects hanggang 2 mga subjects, kung may bagsak na isa o dalawa makipag-ugnayan sila sa school para mabigyan sila ng summer class,” she said.

The bridging program is one of the unique programs initiated by the schools division included in the learning continuity plan under the leadership of Schools Division Superintendent Natividad Bayubay.