Terminal Evaluation of Development Support Service to the Department of Education Computerization Program to K to 12 Basic Education Program of the Department Education of the Philippines

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Evaluation Plan:
2019-2023, Philippines
Evaluation Type:
Final Project
Planned End Date:
05/2021
Completion Date:
05/2021
Status:
Completed
Management Response:
No
Evaluation Budget(US $):
40,000

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Title Terminal Evaluation of Development Support Service to the Department of Education Computerization Program to K to 12 Basic Education Program of the Department Education of the Philippines
Atlas Project Number: 00095022
Evaluation Plan: 2019-2023, Philippines
Evaluation Type: Final Project
Status: Completed
Completion Date: 05/2021
Planned End Date: 05/2021
Management Response: No
UNDP Signature Solution:
  • 1. Governance
Corporate Outcome and Output (UNDP Strategic Plan 2018-2021)
  • 1. Output 2.2.2 Constitution-making, electoral and parliamentary processes and institutions strengthened to promote inclusion, transparency and accountability
SDG Goal
  • Goal 16. Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels
  • Goal 17. Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the Global Partnership for Sustainable Development
  • Goal 4. Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all
SDG Target
  • 16.6 Develop effective, accountable and transparent institutions at all levels
  • 17.18 By 2020, enhance capacity-building support to developing countries, including for least developed countries and small island developing States, to increase significantly the availability of high-quality, timely and reliable data disaggregated by income, gender, age, race, ethnicity, migratory status, disability, geographic location and other characteristics relevant in national contexts
  • 4.1 By 2030, ensure that all girls and boys complete free, equitable and quality primary and secondary education leading to relevant and effective learning outcomes
  • 4.a Build and upgrade education facilities that are child, disability and gender sensitive and provide safe, non-violent, inclusive and effective learning environments for all
Evaluation Budget(US $): 40,000
Source of Funding: Project budget
Evaluation Expenditure(US $): 15,000
Joint Programme: No
Joint Evaluation: No
Evaluation Team members:
Name Title Email Nationality
Noriel Sicad Evaluation Consultant norielsicad@gmail.com
GEF Evaluation: No
Key Stakeholders: Department of Education, National Economic and Development Authority
Countries: PHILIPPINES
Lessons
1.

Based on the interviews (KIIs) and feedback from the respondents to the 4 sets of survey questionnaires, the lessons learned in the procurement, delivery and installation of ICT packages and capacity building on PFM, are listed below.

On Faster Procurement, Delivery and Installation of ICT Packages

  1. The presence of an international agency (UNDP) creates an atmosphere that the procurement transactions were considered as “above ground”. As such, it makes it difficult for suppliers to be causing delays.

  2. Improvements on the procurement process of equipment and ICT packages; through the following: (a) broaden the specification (indicate range) to allow wider competition; (b) added features in procurement process with (i) inspection; (ii) shipment; (iii) insurance; and (iv) training of users; (c) packaging was improved, with pallets and crates; (d) integration of warranty – performance warranty (full cost of warranty) and timeframe warranty (3 years); and (d) coordination with Supplier on the timing of delivery

  3. Key aspects on implementation consisting of: (a) post-delivery visits in checking on the quality of ICT packages, (b) use of warranty, if needed; and (c) learning on the part of the School Principal in asserting their right of receiving properly working equipment.

  4. Emphasis to the recipient schools on the use of 3 -year warranty card, as part of ensuring proper utilization of ICT packages (not just for teachers to accept the ICT packages, on whatever condition).

  5. With the delay implementation due to large scope in the updating of school readiness, cost escalation was incurred due to warehousing of ICT packages, that could not be delivered yet to the schools which were not yet ready. Though the financing on the cost escalation, was covered by the overall financing under the framework of NAM.

On Completeness of Documents

6. Ownership of Assets – the standard template refers to UNDP owning the assets. As such, it must be ensured that our Project Documents state that “the ownership of the goods is automatically transferred to the beneficiary/Government upon acceptance of the goods/completed services. Where a Deed of Transfer of Rights/Ownership is required to be issued by UNDP and accepted by the beneficiary/Government, the same shall be immediately issued by UNDP”. This turn- over of documents is especially important where the goods will go to thousands of public schools, hundreds of LGUs, security risk areas, among other factors that may make inventory and asset management impossible for us to do.

Financial Support to Volunteers

7. Volunteers should have financial support – not necessarily financial compensation, but at least reimbursement of travel and food expenses, when travelling outside their respective community. It is important that the stakeholders were the volunteers such as members of the PTA since the project will benefit their children. Though important to provide financial compensation as payment on cost of internet for report, transportation in going to schools and guiding the delivery trucks for the ICT packages, support for food expenses when travelling outside their community. There was a need to refund the expenses of the volunteers. Hopefully, this concern could be given or addressed in the next projects.

Use of Mobile Technology for Monitoring

8. Use of technology for real time monitoring on: (a) use of KOBO Tool (free application), use of barcode in pallets for easier scanning on delivery of ICT packages and location of schools; (b) use of Devlive (Development live) software – for location (GPS – longitude and latitude), photos to be plotted in maps; (c) continuous improvement on use of technology – submission and uploading of reports usually on weekends, upon return of Teachers to their homes.

On Crucial Support and Partnership with CSO and Community Volunteers

9. The most crucial factor in the success of the field implementation was proper coordination with all stakeholders. “If we make every concerned citizen in a certain locality feel that he/she is a part of the project, he will make use of all his influence to help make the project succeed. Without that, the problem on delivery, peace and order issue, and other related concerns may be an obstacle to the implementation of the project”.


Findings
1.

On the Usefulness of the ICT Packages.

The project delivered ICT packages to a total of 4,767 schools and to 209 DepEd Division Offices, which was procured in 4 separate lots or batches. Of the 4 lots, Lot 4 covered 3,964 schools located in far-flung and un-energized areas across 13 regions of the country. Varying challenges were encountered in transporting the equipment due to the difficulty in reaching the schools due to its problematic accessibility along with the weather condition and peace and order situation. The role of the CSOs and community-based volunteers was recognized by all the stakeholders as the key success factor in surmounting all these challenges. The respondents to the KIIs and surveys highlighted the responsiveness of the CPaGs and community volunteers. As noted by to one of the respondents to the KII, “The most crucial factor in the success of the field implementation was proper coordination with all stakeholders. If we make every concerned citizen in a certain locality feel that he is a part of the project, he will make use of all his influence to help make the project succeed. Without that, the problem on delivery, peace and order issue, and other related concerns may be an obstacle to the implementation of the project.”

From the results of the online survey, many survey respondents indicated their appreciation on the provision of ICT packages, with many of their students experiencing for the first time in touching and using the computers. On hindsight, the provision of ICT packages as well as the undertaking of OER trainings prior to the onset of the Covid19 pandemic, has helped hasten the shift to blended learning. The ICT packages provided support to teachers’ and students’ learning by helping overcome the constraint of regular face-to-face learning.

 


2.

Enabling Policy Support.

The DepEd Memorandum in December 2017 reinforced the participation of the CSO and community-based volunteers and has clearly defined the coordination mechanism with DepEd field offices across the country in relation to school readiness assessment as well as with the delivery and installation of ICT packages. The Project Document (March 2016), DepEd Memorandum No. 208, s. 2017 (December 2017) and the Micro Capital Grant Agreement (MCGA) in support to the CSO/CPaGs (August 2017) served as the enabling instruments (or the catalytic steps) in moving forward and facilitating the implementation of the DCP in bringing the ICT packages to 4,767 schools and to 209 Division Offices, but most specially to the 3,694 unenergized schools in 13 regions and 70 provinces.

The stipulated initiatives covered in this partnership agreement was in line with the Philippine Development Plan (PDP) 2011-2016 and PDP 2017-2022 which provided an overall framework and roadmap to achieve quality, accessible, relevant, and liberating basic education for all, through the provision of assistance to the full implementation of the K to 12 Basic Education Program.


3.

Timeliness of Procurement, Delivery and Installation of ICT Packages

As an overall assessment, the procurement process was carried out efficiently under the National Acceleration Modality (NAM). The procurement of 3 lots of computer sets were carried efficiently. The contract award was done earlier than the 110 days target timeline: with 64 days for Lot 1 (184 stand-alone senior high school (SHS), 86 days for Lot 2 (889 Specialized SHS), and 35 days for Lot 3 (209 DepEd Division Offices). As to the contract implementation, all 3 ICT packages were implemented within the target of 310 days (2015 baseline was 450 days) with 167 days for Lot 1, 291 days for Lot 2, and 102 days for Lot 3.

The contract awarding for Lot 4 that covered 3,694 un-energized schools took about 217 days due to the complexities encountered in matching the specifications of the ICT packages with the solar energy system. There were four (4) rounds of clarifications issued/undertaken with the bidders, responding to a total of 138 procedural and technical questions. An extended implementation period of 789 days was also experienced because while the ICT packages were ready to be delivered, the validation of school readiness has yet to be completed due to the challenges encountered on road access, peace and order, climatic and weather condition, among others. Nonetheless, all ICT packages were delivered to recipient- schools.


4.

Achievement of Project-Level Outcomes.

The project level outcome of “timely and quality of DCP implementation improved” was achieved. From the survey, 93% ICT Focal Persons (323 out of 348) indicated that the ICT packages significantly/very significantly contributed to improving the teachers’ teaching methods that will enhance students’ learning. Also, 83% of teacher respondents (310 out of 375) indicated that the ICT packages were useful/very useful in the transition to mixed/blended learning approach during the pandemic. Furthermore, 96% of teacher respondents (361 out of 376) indicated that the OER topics were helpful in teaching the students, specifically with the mixed learning approach.

With the PFM capability building on procurement, the DSS Project supported the DepEd in preparing the enabling environment through two (2) modules of training out of the 4 modules of the Chartered Institute on Procurement and Services (CIPS), while studies and assessment of PFM processes in six (6) regions were also carried out. The study recommended for a sustained learning and development on PFM. It is recommended that the remaining 2 modules on CIPS be pursued for the capability development at DepEd on procurement. The PFM capability building was pursued as part of the broader government initiative and included as part of the legislative agenda on Budget Reform Act. The intended outcome, therefore, on PFM capability building should be considered as broader than the DSS Project but as a long-term organizational endeavor by DepEd and the Government.

The delivery and installation of ICT packages, with the catch-up OER Trainings for Teachers in 2019, contributed to a better school foundation for teaching and students’ learning. With the hastened shift to blended learning by DepEd due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the relevance and usefulness of the ICT packages and the OER trainings served as an enabling mechanism for continued teaching and learning. The DepEd has continued the OER and digital literacy trainings to the teachers and has trained about 500,000 teachers.

The implementation of the Project has successfully navigated through the transition between two (2) administrations after the 2016 national election. It was started in 2016 and completed in 2019. With the emergence COVID-19 pandemic in the 2020, the ICT packages that were installed in recipient-schools took on a greater role in the transition to mixed modalities in teaching and in students’ learning.


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