Return to site

DepEd, Health Ministers Visit BECS for Hygiene Learning

Gina D. Mendoza

Officials of the Department of Education (DepEd) Region IV-A and a delegation of health and education ministers from 19 countries in the Asia-Pacific region benchmarked Balayan East Central School on November 13 for the 7th Water, Sanitation, Hygiene (Wash) in Schools International Learning Exchange (WinS ILE).

DepEd hosted the five-day WinS ILE from November 11 to 15 in pursuit of achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 4 (SDG 4) which aimed at ensuring inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all.

“This event serves as a platform to exchange experiences, best practices and even challenges to improve WASH in schools among the participating countries,” Region IV-A Asst. Regional Director Ruth L. Fuentes said in her message during the opening program.

Fuentes also recognized the BECS’ ALA-EH WinS (Acquiring Life Assurance and Excellent Health through WASH in School) banner program which highlighted its 10 best practices and are designed to integrate the importance of proper hygiene and sanitation practices promoting lifelong health for “Batang Balayeñong Batangueño.”

On the other hand, Balayan East District PSDS, Mr. Avelino B. Mortel expressed his gratefulness saying that the affair is indeed a lifetime opportunity to showcase the beautiful story on the school implementation of WinS program which is a culmination of everybody’s hard work and teamwork.

School WinS Coordinator, Mrs. Jocelyn D. Robles in her 30-minute presentation highlighted the success stories of how BECS championed the battle on DepEd WASH program in school.

Robles also called the attention of higher in authority, especially the SDO Batangas to help increase their commitment for financial support for the continuous provision of the needs of the learners.

School Principal IV, Dr. Loida P. Rosales, in her message said that to be recognized as an integral part of the seventh ILE would definitely a highlight for the school community.

She also stressed that such experience would certainly signifies much inspiration to the school clientele.


During the benchmarking, BECS showcased its ALA-EH WinS 10 best practices on scaling up school WinS program to the foreign delegates and other representatives.

Pupils from different grade levels showed to them the proper way of hand washing with soap while singing the “hand washing jingle.” Other school facilities were also visited like the school clinic, comfort rooms, individual and group handwashing facilities.

In an interview to Dr. Fouzua Khan from Ministry of Pakistan, she said that since this was her eight-time visit to the country, she was amazed on how committed the Philippine government specifically DepEd in improving the quality of lives among Filipino children in terms of maintaining health and sanitation.

The Pakistani delegate also said that through this event, she had the chance to share with them their challenges and to learn from the experiences of their counterparts in the different countries all over the world.

‘Open forum on WinS’

After benchmarking, a 10-minute wrap up discussions to answer the queries about the school WinS implementation was done. The questions raised were focused on Monitoring & Evaluation, the importance of Operation &Maintenance in the provision of WASH service and other concerns in WASH program.

The event is in partnership with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), German development agency Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), and Save the Children Philippines.

The WinS initiative is part of Oplan Kalusugan (OK) sa DepEd which is the integrated flagship program of the Department’s health programs, plans, policies, and activities for effective and efficient implementation at the school level.

This year’s WinS ILE marks the second time the DepEd has been hosting the event since 2012.