DepEd pushes for creation of Special Education Center in Samal

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/29 January) —  The Department of Education (DepEd) is eyeing the Penaplata Elementary School to be the Special Education (SpEd) center to serve children with special needs in the Island Garden City of Samal (Igacos).
Dr. Minerva Pabros, DepED Regional SpEd coordinator and concurrent officer in charge of the DepEd-XI Bureau of Elementary, said they are trying hard to help Samal establish a SpEd center because “our purpose (is) to have a center in all divisions to serve our children with special needs.”

Samal remains the only school division among nine in the region that is without a SpEd center, she said.

But Pabros said the island city is very active in SpEd activities and is working hard to have at least one center.

According to Pabros, the  local government in Samal has a number of trained teachers actively teaching children with special needs in the elementary schools across the city.

Pabros said a child is considered in need of training in a SpEd center “if he differs from the average child based on mental characteristics, sensory abilities, neuromuscular or physical characteristics, social abilities, multiple handicaps, or has a developmental lag.”

The DepEd regional office is composed of nine divisions: Davao del Sur, Davao del Norte, Tagum City, Panabo City, Digos City, Compostela Valley, Davao Oriental, Davao City and Samal.
There are 15 SpEd centers in the region, serving at least 8,000 special children, including the gifted and talented.

Four centers accredited last year were Panabo Central Elementary School, Compostela Valley Central Elementary School, Tugbok Elementary School in Davao City and Sto. Tomas Elementary School in Davao del Norte.

The San Isidro Elementary School in Davao Oriental and Maragusan Elementary School in Compostela Valley are seeking for accreditation, Pabros said. (Rico Biliran/MindaNews)