HS in Bohol offers solar installation, maintenance to students

TALIBON, Bohol, May 23 (PIA) -- The San Jose National High School (SJNHS) here inches its way to becoming the district hub of technical and vocational skills training for school-based senior high schools into the electrical installation and maintenance (EIM) strand for solar power systems.

This as Vivant Foundation, the corporate social responsibility arm of Vivant which is into renewable energy development, donated solar panels, solar power installation, and maintenance tools as well as support equipment to SJNHS to further upgrade the school training capability for its senior high school students. 

Here, where EIM senior high school students have the option to go into the niche of solar power systems field, the plan is for the graduates to earn employable skills and competencies equal to the standard certifications issued by government technical vocational institution.

SOLAR PHOTO VOLTAIC PANELS, that catch solar energy to be stored in batteries and inverted into power, line the roof of a school building of San Jose National High School in Talibon, thanks to Vivant Foundation's project Renewable Energy, Livelihood and Youth. School authorities said they now save about P10,000 to P15,000 a month in diesel and gasoline fuel expenses for additional learning materials for the students. (rahc/PIA-7/Bohol)

“A few more tweaks and SJNHS would be proudly keeping its tradition of giving employable training to its graduates who would be holding the skills to install and maintain solar power systems,” said Vivant Foundation’s Liberty Pinili, shortly after a brief meeting with the Department of Education (DepED) and Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA).

The meeting came after Vivant Foundation Executive Director Shem Jose Garcia personally turned over the solar power system package, including installation and maintenance tools, to school authorities including DepED Regional Director Dr Salustiano Jimenez, Bohol Division Supt. Dr. Bianito Dagatan, TESDA Bohol Chief Engr. Winefredo Salas, and SJNHS School Principal Marcelina Bautista.

Witnessing the ceremony were local officials led by Cong. Erico Aristotle Aumentado and Talibon Mayor Janette Garcia. 

“With the DepED and the TESDA now in the loop, we are looking at two options: for the school to be designated as a competency testing center for TESDA or a TESDA-accredited institution which can grant National Certification 2 certificates,” Pinili shared. 

Vivant Foundation in cooperation with the European Union is implementing the project under its Renewable Energy, Livelihood and Youth (RELY) projects in Cebu, Bohol, and Palawan.

This project brings renewable solar energy technology to off-grid schools in Bohol’s Second District in a bid to improve learning in these deprived communities leading to improved lives and advance climate change mitigation here.

Implementing solar technology is one thing, having people nearby to maintain them is another, Jose Garcia said in an interview. 

With the solar energy systems in place, and in partnership with DepED which has EIM for standard electricity supplies in place, Vivant saw the school as a strategic hub for training EIM in solar power to serve six schools in Bohol’s island barangays energized by Vivant.

"We see it as an extension of the technology in basic electricity," said Garcia who also led in donating to the schools P800,000 worth of additional equipment to prop up is training capability as solar EIM hub years ago. 

"Together with SEQUA which helped us fund these initiatives and with PROCESS Bohol, we wanted to make sure the benefits go to the communities," Garcia explained.

While Vivant and SEQUA in cooperation with the European Union funded the renewable energy component of the project, its partner PROCESS Bohol provided the livelihood assistance and youth component, said Aurelio Salgados Jr. in a separate interview.  

According to EIM for solar system instructor Nesadel Cajes, this year is the school’s third batch of techvoc class where only 29 re-enrolled from 35 during the first semester.

"Maybe it has something to do with the pandemic and the hardship it brings," said Cajes, whose method of delivery is through module-based learnings coupled with the immersion that allows students to try their hands in electrical installations.

Asked about the donation package, Cajes highlighted its valuable help as this supplements the few sets of tools which the school has.  (rahc/PIA-7/Bohol)



Source: Philippines Information Agency (pia.gov.ph)

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