Australia’s Deputy Head of Mission in the Philippines Mr Mat Kimberly speaks at the Formal Closing Ceremony of the BEST Program.

Australia’s Deputy Head of Mission in the Philippines Mr. Mat Kimberly and Department of Education Undersecretary Atty. Nepomuceno Malaluan led the Formal Closing Ceremony of the BEST Program on 28 May 2019 at Crowne Plaza Galleria Manila to mark the conclusion of the six-year collaboration and to celebrate the Program’s key achievements.

More than a hundred participants from DepEd, both from the Central Office and the six BEST regions, as well as from partner organizations, attended the event.

“I congratulate all of you all for the unwavering enthusiasm in making teaching more effective and for making learning more inclusive and exciting and accessible for our learners. I am certain that all of the activities you have worked on with BEST support have created an impact in the lives of our learners and will continue to do so in the lives of future learners,” Mr. Kimberly said at the ceremony.

The program was highlighted by the signing of the Deed of Donation and Ceremonial Handover of BEST materials to DepEd; and panel discussions on Teaching and Learning, Strengthening Systems, and BEST Achievements in the Regions.

In the morning, both Atty. Malaluan and Mr. Kimberly led the final and joint meeting of the BEST Program Steering Committee (PSC) and the Program Management Committee (PMC) on May 28. Both committees provided policy guidance, strategic directions, and operational guidance to BEST for the last six years. Program gains, lessons learned, and the ways that BEST initiatives will be sustained were reported and discussed at this meeting.

To showcase various accomplishments of the Program, a total of eleven exhibits were set up by the Assessment, Curriculum & Technology Research Centre (ACTRC), Philippine Business for Education (PBEd), Philippine Business for Social Progress (PBSP), Philippine Research Center for Teacher Quality (RCTQ); DepEd Regions 5, 6, 7, 8, 10 and NCR; and the DepEd Central Office.

Over the last six years, BEST has assisted the Philippine education sector in its shift from ten-year to K to 12 curriculum for basic education by supporting major reform areas in the Department of Education, namely: pre-service and in-service teacher development; education leadership and management; curriculum and assessment; development of learning and teaching materials; construction of disaster-resilient, gender sensitive, and disability-inclusive classrooms; context-specific learning systems; policy and planning; unified information systems; gender and development; and organizational development.

The ceremony was hosted by BEST Team Leader Dr. Alison Atwell and Deputy Team Leader Ms. Hazel Aniceto.