Security Bank Foundation commits to improving reading competencies through Ready, Set, Read!

Security Bank’s Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) arm Security Bank Foundation, Inc. (SBFI) successfully rolled out its Ready, Set, Read! video series for elementary students in partnership with the Knowledge Channel Foundation, Inc. (KCFI) and Ateneo De Manila University (ADMU), as part of its advocacy to improve the quality of education and reading competencies of Filipino learners.

The program involved the production of English Reading educational videos and training of teachers on new strategies to help enhance students’ reading skills relevant to distance-learning delivery.  The videos were distributed through the Knowledge Channel, and accessible online through Facebook, YouTube, and partners’ websites. The materials are also available offline through KCFI portable media libraries donated to thousands of schools nationwide.   

The challenges of 21st century education and this pandemic have encouraged us to partner with the Knowledge Channel and Ateneo de Manila University to produce videos on English Reading competencies aligned with the Department of Education curriculum. We focused on English Reading to address the findings of global student assessments that Filipino learners lag in reading comprehension versus their international peers,” explained Melissa Aquino, SBFI Trustee and Corporate Secretary.

To gauge the effectiveness of the program, an impact assessment was administered in the form of student examination facilitated by the trained teachers. Out of a sample size of approximately 3,000 students, 90% exhibited the minimum required proficiency level in English Reading.

During the pilot implementation in school year 2020-2021, the Ready, Set, Read! Program rolled out twenty videos that focused on four competency areas that students need to develop based on surveys conducted by SBFI and focus group discussions among teachers.

These competencies include predicting possible ending of stories for Grade 1; making inferences and drawing conclusions as well as interpreting graphs, tables, and pictographs for Grade 3; and inferring the meaning of unfamiliar words in stories for Grade 5.

Since its roll-out in January 2021, a total of 9,125 teachers attended the trainings. The trainings conducted used digital learning tools such as Kahoot!, Mentimeter and Quizziz to inspire teachers to adapt to new teaching modalities in their classes.

Karen Kae Rota, a teacher in Catmon Elementary School in Ormoc City, shared how her students loved the videos. “I asked my students and they told me that the videos helped them better understand compound words and context clues. They also loved the interactive engagement of viewers through the questions and games in the videos,” said Rota.

As of December 2021, estimated 10.6 million Filipino students have watched the videos either through the Knowledge Channel or various platforms.

SBFI, KCFI, and ADMU aim to enhance the Ready, Set, Read! Program for school year 2021-2022 to address the other findings of the impact assessment. To know more about Security Bank Foundation, its CSR and sustainability initiatives, visit www.securitybank.com/sustainability or Security Bank’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/SecurityBank