DBM releases P941M for public schools’ desks, chairs in 2012By Ronnel W. Domingo
Philippine Daily Inquirer
MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Budget and Management has released P941.3 million for the purchase of elementary and high school students’ armchairs and teachers’ desks.
Budget Secretary Florencio B. Abad said on Wednesday in a statement the release was charged against the Department of Education’s lump sum for the requirement of basic educational facilities under the 2012 national budget.
“Too often, the students themselves outnumber the chairs and tables, and many of the children are forced to stand up during class or squeeze uncomfortably into their classmates’ desks,” Abad said.
“With the addition of much-needed furniture, however, it will be easier for schoolchildren to pay attention to their lessons and participate in class,” he added. “This will of course result in improved academic performance, and the children will be better-positioned to perform well in and outside the school halls.”
The budget chief said the chairs and tables would be distributed to schools with facility shortages and priority given to those with buildings that are newly constructed or have yet to be built.
Besides providing additional school furniture, the DepEd is also tasked to construct rehabilitate, replace, complete and repair school buildings in areas experiencing acute classroom shortage, as well as provide sufficient water and sanitation facilities to several schools and campuses.
Recipient schools will be furnished 45 arm chairs for every classroom, along with a table-and-chair set for the teacher or class instructor, according to Abad.
The top recipients are schools in the National Capital Region (P109 million worth of furniture), the Mimaropa region (P99 million) and those in Bicol (P83 million).
“It’s even more crucial for us to provide students with the proper classroom facilities, now that the K-12 program is in place,” Abad said. “The DepEd is also working vigorously to reverse the classroom backlog in the country and improve the student-to-teacher ratio in our public schools.”
Earlier this year, President Benigno Aquino III approved the implementation of the K-12 program, which adds one more year to elementary education and another to secondary education.