With the public school classes commencing last month, the country’s elementary and high school students are in for a new digital experience in contrast to the traditional face-to-face instruction that generations of Filipinos have undergone before. Responding to this national need for an effective distance learning platform for the nearly 25M enrollees this SY 2020-2021, Cignal TV, the leading Pay TV provider in the Philippines with its nationwide coverage and availability serving 2.6 million subscribers, has recently inked a partnership with the Department of Education (DepEd) to open up two channels dedicated to DepEd TV’s content across both Cignal TV and SatLite, it’s mass-market pay-TV brand.

According to DepEd Undersecretary for Administration Alain Del B. Pascua, “Recent restrictions in face-to-face classes caused by the COVID-19 pandemic compelled DepEd to adopt alternative learning delivery modalities for School Year (SY) 2020-2021. As cited in its Basic Education Learning Continuity Plan (BE-LCP), DepEd has identified four modalities for distance learning including television-based instruction and radio-based instruction.”

DepEd TV via Cignal TV CH.149 and SatLite CH.189 launched simultaneously with the start of classes. It is available to all prepaid and postpaid Cignal subscribers, as well as SatLite subscribers. The channel is available to DTH subscribers even if they do not have load in their accounts, ensuring every subscriber has access to the channel. DepEd TV will also be streamed for free on Cignal’s OTT streaming service called Cignal Play and is available for Android and iOS users upon registry via cignalplay.com.

Cignal TV’s President and CEO Robert P. Galang says, “The need to support students and families through distance learning is an integral step in helping both our students and their parents through these challenging times. We want television to provide convenience to students at home, a chance for parents to be involved, and educators to be eased. Partnering with the Department of Education is aligned with Cignal TV’s mission to provide a broad and meaningful experience for households; merging entertainment and education in order to empower Filipinos”.

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Education Secretary Leonor Briones said TV and radio-based instruction are important in distance learning, especially for students who do not have access to the internet. “Napakahalaga ng TV at radio sa buong bansa kasi ‘di naman lahat may access sa [internet] connectivity,” she said during the signing of a memorandum of agreement between the DepEd and its partner channels and radio stations.

DepEd TV broadcasts will be from 7:00 AM to 7:00 PM from Monday to Saturday for the next two (2) years. This is a small step that Cignal TV is taking to ensure that it gives back to the community through its platforms and nationwide reach.