How McDonald's Philippines Created Classrooms to Help Teachers with Virtual Schooling

April 14, 2021

How McDonald's Philippines Created Classrooms to

As the lockdown dragged on in the Philippines last year, schools opened in October to the harsh reality of distance learning. For Filipino teachers, cramped conditions at home and inadequate internet coverage in many parts of the country made the transition even more difficult. 

Meanwhile, party rooms at McDonald’s – usually home to birthday celebrations and other gatherings before the pandemic – sat dark and empty.

Upholding its responsibility to the community, McDonald’s Philippines transformed empty party rooms into McClassrooms: work areas for teachers who needed quiet, sanitized spaces with reliable internet connections to conduct virtual classes or develop teaching modules. 

“There have been so many times I felt downhearted, but I always think what will happen to the students if we, teachers, don’t do our jobs?” said teacher Arlyne Berina, who used one of the makeshift classrooms. 

Teachers were invited to pre-register in their nearby McDonald’s restaurant, and when they arrived, were welcomed not only with warm smiles from the crew, but also free WiFi and free McCafe coffee for a much-needed boost.

“It is during the most challenging times that we [McDonald’s] have the responsibility and opportunity to do more for the community,” said McDonald’s Philippines President and CEO Kenneth Yang. “The McClassroom initiative was our way of serving and honoring the work of teachers. We remain committed to helping teachers with initiatives like this as we navigate through the next normal together.”

McDonald’s Philippines opened more than 220 McClassrooms ultimately all over the country during its national teachers’ month, smoothing the process for educators by partnering with a telecom company to provide prepaid Wi-Fi gadgets and securing endorsement from the country’s education department 

“Thank you, this one is a big help for us,” said teacher Vivian Aro in a Tweet, one of many social media messages in support of the initiative. 

Tweeted another observer, Cyrelle Bello, “McDonald’s is adapting to the new norm. No parties? Not a problem. Brilliant!” 

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