Educ dept strengthens drug education program in schools nationwide

MANILA-- The Department of Education (DepEd) is strengthening its National Drug Education Program (NDEP) in an effort to protect students from the scourge of illegal drugs.

"The DepEd has been implementing the NDEP for years now to prevent drug use and abuse among students. The department sees the need to continuously strengthen it because of the rampant cases of drug-related incidents in the country," DepEd NDEP focal person Girlie Azurin said in a release issued Saturday.

The program provides a holistic approach in preventing and eliminating the menace of drugs in the country and enables all sectors to work collaboratively with the school system. It has five components used by the DepEd to create awareness on the ill effects of illegal drugs: curriculum and instruction; co-curricular and ancillary services; teacher and staff development; parent education and community outreach; and research, monitoring, and evaluation.

Education Secretary Leonor Magtolis Briones, in a recent interview, assured that the program will be age-appropriate.

"We are implementing it at the present curriculum but we are developing enhancements. I have already instructed the Undersecretary for Curriculum and Instruction to look into it," Briones said.

The DepEd has also established the Barkada Kontra Droga Chapters in schools; intensified anti-drug abuse information campaigns; supported the activities planned by the designated regional and schools division NDEP coordinators; and involved parent-teacher associations and student organizations in drug abuse prevention activities.

To enrich the NDEP, the department will allocate funds for the replication of modules and teaching aides, and develop other supplementary instructional materials.

The DepEd has partnered with the Dangerous Drugs Board (DBB) and other government and non-government agencies in its anti-illegal drug initiatives. (PNA)

Source: Philippines information agency

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