USAID, WMSU Inaugurate Teachers Resource Hub
March 8, 2006

THE United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and Western Mindanao State University (WMSU) inaugurated on Tuesday, March 7, a joint project called Teachers Resource Hub based in the university’s Language Development and Resource Center (LDRC).

Several hundreds of text and work books were also turned over by USAID to WMSU during the affair. The books form part of the agency’s assistance program called Education Quality and Access for Learning and Livelihood Skills (EQuALLS) “designed to address the disparities in educational access and quality in conflicted areas of Mindanao.”

WMSU President Dr. Eldigario Gonzales signed a memorandum of agreement in which the university partnered with the agency, through the latter’s institutional contractor Creative Associates International, Inc. to act as the Teacher’s Resource Hub for Western Mindanao and the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM). EQuALLS through the resource center will extend “in-service training (to) teachers currently assigned at Department of Education schools and assistance to Teacher Education Institutions towards the improvement of pre-service training of teachers,” Dr. Gonzales said.

The resource hub “shall service as an area where teachers and education students can borrow and use materials for learning and teaching purposes, seek technical assistance from specially-trained WMSU staff and professors and discuss various concerns in the teaching profession,” the WMSU president explained. He noted that WMSU is the premier and traditional institution of teachers training in Western Mindanao and ARMM.

Some two million books will be donated to the resource center in the next three years, Brothers Brother Foundation’s Carol Taylor said. Taylor and Jay Savage, another foundation officer, were present to witness and facilitate the turnover ceremony. The books are collected by the Brothers Brother Foundation on behalf of the USAID.

The donated books were about English proficiency, mass communication, psychology, mathematics and information technology, LDRC chief Prof. Yvonne Ramos said.

EQuALLS aims to raise the English, mathematics and science proficiency of teachers through trainings and other assistance coursed through the Department of Education and Teachers Resource Hub, Ramos said. (Rey-Luis Banagudos, PAO-WMSU)