UNACOM promotes and participates in the Stakeholders’ Convergence 2022 for the Transforming Education Summit (TES)

The Department of Education (DepEd) conducted the Stakeholders' Convergence 2022 for the Transforming Education Summit (TES) on 5 August 2022 in Pasig City. The UNESCO National Commission of the Philippines (UNACOM) and UNESCO Clubs youth representatives joined various education stakeholders in addressing priority areas to transform education. The event also served as a venue for proposing inputs for the TES National Statement of Commitment.

In the DepEd report, a series of consultation activities with education forum members, government agencies, local government units, and regional development council, as well as community consultations with school-level stakeholders in different school types, were undertaken. It was also mentioned that the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM), through the Ministry of Basic, Higher, and Technical Education (MBHTE),
led a TES Consultation with Multi stakeholders.

In her message to the participants, Vice President and DepEd Secretary Sara Duterte, who was designated by the President as the National Convenor for TES, underscored that “The core of our mission is to ensure that we can provide accessible, equitable quality-based education to Filipino children so we can build a better future for them so they can become productive members of their communities and active partners of the government.” The UNICEF and UNESCO, together with the UN Resident Coordinator and other UN Offices, support the country’s initiatives relative to TES. In his message, UN Resident Coordinator Gustavo Gonzalez mentioned, “The Summit will provide a unique opportunity to reinvent education and revitalize efforts to achieve Sustainable Development Goal 4 by 2030.

Four principles guide the preparations for the Transforming Education Summit:

Number One, it should be country-led.

I am glad to note that the national government has taken leadership in these consultations. The recent appointment of Vice President Sara Duterte, in her capacity as Secretary of Education, as the National Convenor for the TES, reflects the government’s commitment to this process.

Number Two, it should be inclusive.

We recognize that it is critical for the voices of the youth, parents, teachers, and all stakeholder groups to be reflected in the process.

Number Three, it should be youth-inspired.

The UN Secretary-General has made a special emphasis on the importance of the role of the youth in shaping the Summit and making sure the Summit itself is prepared with, and for, the youth.

And Number Four, it should build on existing efforts.

During the event’s break-out session, UNACOM highlighted the active role of young people in the Philippines in shaping policy and program discussions that could contribute to transforming education. UNACOM also emphasized that, while we are addressing certain issues on literacy and numeracy, it is crucial to include in the discussions on transforming education the need to address the humanistic form of education – a strong focus on students’ emotional well-being and character building.

Throughout the convergence, Kiko Miranda, an artist, captured the event's highlights and significant messages through his artwork.

The event provided testimonials from the youth coming from different areas nationwide. To echo youth representative RJ Reyes of the Regional Supreme Student Government President of Region IV-A Calabarzon: “Fellow youth, the final bastion of democracy is in our hands. Let us transform our education system for the better so it may work for the last, least, and the lost.”

A proposed Country Statement for TES, with inputs from stakeholders, will be submitted to the National Convenor, in preparation the Summit in New York in September 2022.