DepEd overhauls group addressing education needs of Pinoy kids in Sabah
MANILA — The Department of Education has overhauled the technical working group (TWG) overseeing and addressing the education of thousands of undocumented Filipino children in Sabah.
In a memorandum, Education Secretary Leonor Briones said the reconstitution of the group was a result of the change in administration and was part of the agency’s efforts to continually address the problems faced by many school-aged Filipino children in the Malaysian state at the northern part of Borneo island.
The children have no access to public schools due to the irregular status of their parents.
Briones said the newly reconstituted TWG would represent the Philippines in the second meeting of the joint working group this year, to be held in Malaysia.
The new TWG is composed of Assistant Secretary Tonisito Umali as chair; Assistant Secretary GH Ambat as vice chair and Directors Margarita Consolacion Ballesteros, Jocelyn Andaya, Nelia Benito, Marilette Almayda, Edel Carag, Roger Masapol and Myron Talosig as members.
The group has been directed to establish partnerships with the Malaysian government as well as secure more support from other local government agencies and come up with legislative recommendations or policies to address the education of the children in Sabah.
Briones noted that there are roughly 25,000 undocumented Filipino children in Sabah without access to education. Of this number, less than 10 percent are studying in six alternative learning centers. SFM
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