TIWI, Albay --- Tribal daycare teacher Shirley Dacuba of Sitio Tobgon, Barangay Misibis in this town is seeking for groups and individuals who will donate children’s books and school supplies for use by her pupils before the school opening this year.
Dacuba, mother of a five-year-old daughter, belongs to the Agta-Tabangnon tribe in this town. She is a daycare teacher for two years now.
She will be teaching 34 daycare pupils at the Tobgon Tribal Hal located in the compound of Tobgon Elementary School, who are without books and school supplies.Dacuba said that she needs children’s books, school supplies and a cabinet or bookshelves. She said that her honorarium is just a pittance and that she could not afford to buy necessary school materials for her pupils, whose parents are impoverished.
“I am just receiving P3,200 honorarium from the barangay and additional P1,000 from the local government unit of Tiwi or a total of P4,200 monthly. I’m handling 34 tribal daycare pupils this school year. We need books, school supplies and bookshelves,” she said.
Dacuba, who took an education course at the Tiwi Community College, dropped out from school when she was a third year college student.
The Agta-Tabangnon tribe members in Tiwi, Albay are among the 14 million indigenous people (IP) across the country.
In Albay, specifically in Tiwi town, there are four tribal communities living in the upland villages of Mayong, Misibis, Tabgon, and Joroan, wherein teachers and children lack facilities, books, school supplies, and other instructional materials.
This school year (SY), the Department of Education (DepEd) in Bicol recorded some 1.52 million enrollees for SY 2020-2021. Bicol region is ranked third among the 17 regions with highest registration.
DepEd has no available figure as to the total number of IP student enrollees this school year.
As of July 15, 2020, DepEd Bicol data on enrollees showed that there are: 98, 201 learners in kindergarten; 700,512 in elementary; 193,132 in senior high school; 485,645 in junior high school; 5,516 learners with disabilities; 35, 543 in Alternative Learning System; and 68,617 from the private schools.
In terms of percentage of enrolment turnout in the country, Bicol region ranked No. 3 among the 17 regions as it already reached 82.36 percent based from 2019 enrolment turnout.
Bicol region is next to Regions 8 with 85.68 percent and MIMAROPA with 83.63 percent enrollees respectively.