Third District early literacy program empowers mentors 

Former governor  Rafael Coscolluela, Rep Francisco Benitez and  English specialists Julie Kahn and Dr. Clarissa Rosas.* 

Rep. Francisco “Kiko” Benitez (Neg. Occ., 3rd District), commissioner  of the Second Congressional Commission for Education (EDCOM 2), led the culmination of the Negros Occidental Early Literacy Program dubbed  “Weaving the Strands of Literacy Skills into Successful Readers”  in Talisay City on Friday,  May 17. 

The program  empowered more  than  600 Child Development Workers and public school teachers, and  750 books were turned over to daycare centers in the  Third District. 

The main goal of the program was to address the learning crisis right from the start. Studies reveal the critical importance of early childhood education in fostering cognitive development in children, underscoring the urgency of interventions in promoting early literacy and learning, a press release from the office of Benitez said.

The first leg of the program, conducted from April to May trained over 370 public school teachers from  200 schools in the Third District and Bacolod City.  

The second leg trained 250 Child Development Workers from various Day Care Centers. More than  750 books, bookshelves, and play mats were donated to  selected centers in Victorias Silay and  Talisay cities and the municipalities of EB Magalona  and Murcia. 

Dr. Clarissa E. Rosas and Julie Kahn, English language specialists from the United States, were the trainers who were actively involved for nearly two months.

They visited schools and daycare centers, especially in remote areas in the Third District.

Benitez  pointed out that literacy is always key to opening doors of opportunities for everyone. 

The training program was a collaborative effort between the office of Benitez, the United States Embassy – Regional Language Office, Department of Education, Synergeia Foundation Inc., Metro 3rd local governments units, Bacolod City and the Department of Social Welfare and Development.

Joining the culminating program were Conchita Chico of the US Embassy in Manila,  Reading Specialists Dr. Clarissa E. Rosas, Julie Kahn and  Richard Kahn, former governor Rafael Coscolluela and Jay Jalandoni of Synergeia,  Murcia Mayor Gerry Rojas, Victorias City Councilor Derek Palanca,  Silay City Councilor Ryan Gamboa, and Talisay  Assistant City Administrator Ismael Penado.* 

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