Tarlac schools get chairs, desks from Tagum | Inquirer News

Tarlac schools get chairs, desks from Tagum

/ 07:10 PM May 27, 2012

TAGUM CITY—Councilor Wrancudo Felix of Camiling town in Tarlac province was reading the May 14 issue of the Inquirer when he came across a story on the Metro page about a school in Payatas, Quezon City, receiving chairs from this city’s government.

On the same day, Felix sent a letter to Mayor Rey Uy, asking for some 200 pieces of school furniture to be used for schools in Bacabac, Cayaoan, Libueg, Pindangan 1st and Pindangan 2nd.

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Uy immediately granted Felix’s request, which made Camiling the second non-Mindanao area recipient of school chairs and desks made from confiscated logs turned over by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), after Payatas.

Under the city’s Care for School Chairs (CFSC) program, 279 pieces of assorted new school chairs—79 more than what Felix had asked—were hauled on May 25 for Camiling.

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“The donation of classroom furniture to our elementary schools in my district will truly complete our school package that we are dreaming for so long for these barangays’ public schools,” Felix said.

Uy said the city government was glad “to reach out to the municipality of Camiling.”

He said the city government was also willing to fulfill the request of other schools, even if these are not in Mindanao.

The CFSC project was launched by the Tagum government in 2008 after forging agreements with the DENR for the turnover of seized logs instead of just letting them rot, and the Department of Education.

To date, nearly 45,000 chairs and desks had been delivered to various schools in Mindanao and in Luzon, including Camiling.

Uy said the continued confiscation of logs by the DENR and other law enforcement agencies gave a boost to the CFSC program.

“Although it is sad that cutting of trees was continuing, the confiscations also help our students in some ways,” he said.

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Recently, the national Anti-Illegal Logging Task Force turned over 32,984 board feet of lauan and yakal logs to the city government for the CFSC program.

Jim Sampulna, DENR director for southern Mindanao, said the chairs and desks made from the confiscated logs could be put to use in time for the opening of classes in June.

“The logs will help address the lack of desks and school fixtures needed to serve the growing number of students,” he said.

Meanwhile, the city government’s CFSC has gained more support. Uy said Agriculture Secretary Proceso Alcala, during a recent visit here, has pledged P500,000 for the acquisition of paints and other materials needed to further sustain the program.

“In return, the Department of Agriculture requested that information materials that children will be able to comprehend be painted on the kiddie tables, which are distributed to kindergarten institutions in Davao Region,” he said.

Education Assistant Secretary Elena Ruiz said she has not seen such a useful program as the CFSC in the entire country.

“It is really making history,” she said during a visit here on May 17.

“I look forward to the day when the city will be the one to make chairs for the entire department. I cannot make a commitment for the secretary but  in behalf of the teachers, we should make sure that these chairs made by Tagum are taken care of,” Ruiz said.

“I cannot help but admire how the administration transcends the meaning of public service in Tagum City. As the Sangguniang Bayan committee chair on agriculture and environmental protection, I would love to duplicate your agreement with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources to experience it also in our municipality,” Felix said. Germelina Lacorte and Frinston Lim, Inquirer Mindanao

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TAGS: councilors, Education, Local authorities, Local Governments, mayors, News, public schools, Regions, Rey Uy, Schools, Wrancudo Felix
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