Pasig City – The Department of Education (DepEd) as the lead agency â€“ through its Bureau of Alternative Learning System (DepEd-BALS) â€“ will give out-of-school youth and adults a second chance at learning by administering a special Accreditation and Equivalency (A&E) Exam that will be held in 189 testing centers nationwide on June 12, 2008.
It will target out-of-school learners who want to either pursue college or work without a college diploma. The A&E Exam aims to assess the examinees’ basic life skills such as literacy, numeracy, and problem solving. Those who pass the exam are given an A&E diploma which is equivalent to a high school diploma.
“We want to free our learners from illiteracy through the A&E Exam,” said DepEd Secretary Jesli Lapus. “This is part of our commitment to pursue Education for All which we are mandated to uphold,” he added.
It will be conducted in 189 testing centers or DepEd divisions nationwide. Registration and evaluation of accomplished A&E registration forms by ALS field personnel on the examination day itself will start from 7 to 11 am. The test will run from 1 to 6 pm.
According to BALS Director Carolina Guerrero, the June 12 exam is in response to Lapus’ directive to do something relevant for the learners on the celebration of Independence Day. “Secretary Lapus wants the celebration to have practical meaning for our learners,” she said.
Guerrero further explained that Lapus wants the occasion to be relevant to all kinds of learners, especially to those outside the formal learning system.
Administrative Order 205 by President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo directs the Education Chief to lead the organization and implementation of activities to commemorate Independence Day on June 12, 2008. Lapus has organized a task force with representatives from the Office of the President, Department of Education, Department of Tourism, and the National Historical institute.
The Bureau of Alternative Learning System is an integral part of DepEd’s commitment to Education for All or EFA, which is UNESCO’s goal to universalize primary education by 2015. DepEd-BALS seeks to integrate out-of-school youth and adults who were not able to avail themselves of formal schooling. The A&E program does not discriminate learners on the basis of age or economic status.