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STARBOOKS Digital Library Empowering Philippine Communities

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The turnover and training orientation on the STARBOOKS digital library recently took place in Mainit, Surigao del Norte. Spearheaded by the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) in Surigao del Norte, this occasion aims to enhance knowledge-sharing and spark innovation within the community.

Image credits: DOST-SDN, Philippine Information Agency

Under the auspices of the DOST Caraga’s local grants-in-aid programme, this initiative served as an official introduction of the STARBOOKS digital library system to the community, providing access to scientific and technological resources, connecting the townsfolk to a vast repository of knowledge, unlocking new avenues for exploration and learning.

The ceremonial turnover of the five computer sets equipped with STARBOOKS technology to the local government unit of Mainit, Surigao del Norte, marked a significant milestone in the journey towards educational empowerment.

Led by DOST Surigao del Norte Provincial Director Mariel P. Makinano, the event highlighted the Science and Technology (CEST) Programme’s crucial role in local development. Makinano emphasised STARBOOKS’ transformative potential, catering to students, educators, and researchers and fostering a culture of inquiry. She envisioned STARBOOKS revolutionising learning experiences in Mainit and beyond, shaping a more technologically-driven society.

To facilitate the seamless integration of STARBOOKS into the fabric of the community, DOST Caraga Regional Office Science and Research Specialist, Narciso M. Batingal Jr., conducted a comprehensive training orientation. Batingal elucidated the myriad features and functionalities of STARBOOKS, equipping participants with the tools and knowledge needed to harness its full potential. From navigating the digital interface to accessing interactive modules, participants gained invaluable insights into the transformative power of technology in education.

Mayor Crisanta O. Mondano welcomed this initiative, recognising the invaluable role of STARBOOKS in enhancing learning experiences for both teachers and pupils alike. As she expressed her gratitude to the personnel of DOST, Mayor Mondano reiterated her commitment to fostering a culture of learning and innovation within the community.

Echoing Mayor Mondano’s sentiments, Municipal Planning and Development Officer of Mainit, Vanesa Naldosa, underscored the importance of initiatives like STARBOOKS in advancing education in the locality. With its potential to democratise access to knowledge and empower individuals, STARBOOKS represents a major milestone for the community, transcending barriers and opening doors to new opportunities.

Representatives from recipient schools such as Binga Elementary School (ES), Cantugas ES, Magpayang ES, Mansayao ES, and Marayag ES echoed Mayor Mondano and Naldosa’s sentiments, expressing their appreciation and eagerness to integrate this innovative technology into their educational practices. As they embraced the possibilities offered by STARBOOKS, they heralded a new era of learning and discovery in Mainit, fueled by the transformative power of technology.

STARBOOKS, short for the Science and Technology Academic and Research-Based Openly-Operated KioskS, is an independent information hub designed to cater to those with limited access to Science and Technology (S&T) resources. The project’s objective is to deliver Science, Technology, and Innovation (STI)-based content in various formats to students and communities in remote and economically disadvantaged areas across the nation.

Featuring hundreds of thousands of digitised S&T resources in text, video, and audio formats, STARBOOKS offers a user-friendly interface through specially designed “pods”. The initiative includes special features like:

  • Stand-Alone: STARBOOKS operates independently, allowing access to a wide range of information even without an internet connection.
  • Multi-Access: Multiple users can simultaneously access STI resources when STARBOOKS is connected to local wifi or a Local Area Network (LAN).
  • Transportable: Easily transportable, STARBOOKS brings STI information directly to users, bridging the gap between DOST-STII and remote locations.
  • Free: The installation of the system, content updates, system support, and training for all users are provided free of charge.

With STARBOOKS, Mainit’s community, and many more like it, embraces technology’s transformative potential, shaping a brighter future. This initiative underscores the Department of Science and Technology’s dedication to education and community development.


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