When there are not enough teachers to handle a growing number of learners, kids can be tapped to teach their fellow learners.

Haydee Alburo and Maricel Cabus are the only teachers of Cabunga-an Primary School, a public elementary school located in Mercedes, Eastern Samar that has six grade levels. As one of the 22 grantees of the BEST Innovation Fund, they went through an orientation on Financial Guidelines and Procedures from the BEST team on 14 June 2018.

Their innovation project—Book-loving Kid—aims to tap independent readers from grades 3 and 4 to teach non-readers in grades 1, 2 and 3.

Teachers Maricel Cabus (left) and Haydee Alburo (right) from Cabunga-an Primary School, Mercedes, Eastern Samar.

“It is called ‘Kids Teaching Kids’ because there is a pupil leader. The project taps the potential of the student leader.  The children meet for about 30 minutes in the morning before the flag ceremony, another 30 minutes before the afternoon session starts and another after class.  This way, classes will not be disrupted,” shared Ms Alburo who also acts as head teacher.

The money they get from the BEST Innovation Fund, which totals P101,300, will be used to develop reading modules and other learning materials to be used during the kids’ learning sessions.

“We’re very excited and we’re really looking forward to the results of our project – to make students independent readers by the end of the school year,” said Ms Cabus.

BEST Innovation Fund is a funding facility designed to encourage new (from local perspectives) and demand-driven approaches to improve student learning in schools within the BEST regions. It is designed to test new as well as proven ideas or project schemes at the local level which are worth replicating in other regions. Schools and division offices were invited to submit proposals that reflect the priority areas of both DepEd and BEST.

The Fund is part of BEST Program’s support to DepEd in building its capacity to enrich the quality, effectiveness and the efficiency of service delivery under the K to 12 school system. DepEd has committed to sustain the gains of the innovation projects under Phase 2 of its Basic Education Research Fund (BERF).