[Editor's Note: PLDT Enterprise continues to move and adapt to the changing needs of today's Filipinos. With this, they explore their role in e-learning. Below is their story.]
In an attempt to curb the spread of COVID-19, schools, colleges, and universities were mandated to postpone classes which pushed the education sector to shift to remote learning and make use of digital technology to secure learning for Filipino students in such extraordinary times.
In response, PLDT Enterprise brought together key thought leaders across different industries – starting with the academe sector – through its series of online industry forum called #ONEwithYOU to discuss how the global pandemic is reshaping the future of these industries.
“This closure forced most schools to consider online learning as the next best option to reach students remotely. The pandemic has shifted the way we educate people but still, it led surprisingly to innovations [such as in teaching practices]," said Professor Cherylle Ramos, President of Phil eLearning Society (PeLS) and Director of Educational Technology Center of the University of Sto. Tomas during PLDT Enterprise’s first #ONEwithYOU Virtual Industry Forum.
Technology has thus become a paramount tool for the academe and other industries and sectors alike to ensure continuity of operations. Digital learning has now been pushed into the mainstream, with schools and students trying to get used to new platforms for distance learning, including video conferencing and learning management systems.
PLDT Enterprise, which has been supporting the education sector to leverage technology to enhance learning systems, further sees an uptake on digital learning as the pandemic continues to affect lives and the future of students.
“In the PLDT Group, we are now taking a very serious look at the educational sector. What we've looked at is that the learning management systems that the schools have implemented so far, there is a potential for us as a telco to actually ameliorate e-learning,” said Jovy Hernandez, ePLDT President & CEO and SVP & Head for PLDT and Smart Enterprise Business Groups during PLDT’s Tech Talk On Air webinar event last April 23.
PLDT Enterprise is currently looking into collaborating with more providers of learning management systems in order to enhance the e-learning experience in the country.
“Advances in technology to make education more widely accessible will enable our students to continue to learn and do so in new but interesting ways,” said Hernandez. “With the many strides in online learning tools, educational facilities have many options to choose from to make sure that they can leverage the most appropriate technologies for their students’ needs. And as distance learning becomes the new normal for now, we are ready to support the academe to, in turn, provide the level of education and learning their students expect and need.”
One particular institution that’s currently utilizing such technology for e-Learning amid the COVID-19 crisis is De La Salle Lipa. “We have not stopped teaching. Even before March 15, we've gone online probably because we have prepared even before this. Through PLDT, we've had our infrastructure done—we had put in 15 kilometers of fiber optic network three years ago in all our classrooms,” said Bro. Dante Jose Amisola, President and Chancellor of De La Salle Lipa.
“Our students, faculty, and staff that are currently working from home and on online learning mode from home could fully utilize what we have placed,” Amisola added.
Harping on the group’s expertise in delivering innovative solutions, PLDT Enterprise is continuously exploring ways to enable e-learning for local schools and universities with technology.
“Providing solutions for e-learning can not be achieved by one entity or group. It is a collective effort coming from the government, private sectors, NGOs, and other concerned groups, and that’s why we at PLDT are constantly coordinating with various entities to create an educational ecosystem,” said PLDT Enteprise Corporate Relationship Management Head Dick Perez, along with notable leaders of the academe, during PLDT Enterprise’s #ONEwithYOU Virtual Industry Forum.
PLDT Enterprise's #ONEwithYOU webinar for the academe industry, which streamed live with more than 2k viewers tuned in, was participated by key leaders of the sector including: Cherylle Ramos, President of Phil eLearning Society (PeLS) and Director of Educational Technology Center at UST; Dante Jose Amisola, President and Chancellor of De La Salle Lipa; Andrew Haslip, Head of Content for Asia Pacific for GlobalData; Allan Arellano, Executive Director of Catholic Educational Association of the Philippines (CEAP), and Dick Perez, Corporate Relationship Management Head of PLDT Enterprise.
To learn more, watch the live recording of the #ONEwithYOU webinar through the link below: https://pldtenterprise.com/virtual-industry-forum.
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