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Sorsogon kids find classrooms in ruin, disarray

By: - Correspondent / @msarguellesINQ
/ 12:20 AM January 07, 2016
CHILDREN of families living in coastal areas in Bicol take shelter in a school-turned-evacuation center at the height of Typhoon “Nona,” which destroyed or damaged hundreds of classrooms across the region. MARK ALVIC ESPLANA / INQUIRER SOUTHERN LUZON

CHILDREN of families living in coastal areas in Bicol take shelter in a school-turned-evacuation center at the height of Typhoon “Nona,” which destroyed or damaged hundreds of classrooms across the region. MARK ALVIC ESPLANA / INQUIRER SOUTHERN LUZON

LEGAZPI CITY—Thousands of public elementary and high school students in Sorsogon returned to school on Monday from the holiday break greeted by classrooms wrecked by Typhoon “Nona” in December, according to an official of the Department of Education (DepEd) Schools Division in the province.

Classes in all levels in Sorsogon opened on Monday amid ongoing repairs of school structures and equipment that had been damaged by Typhoon Nona, said Joseph Perez, spokesperson of the DepEd Sorsogon Schools Division office.

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Perez said that of 530 public elementary and secondary schools in Sorsogon, 89 percent or 390 schools reported damage in their classrooms affecting some 168,332 elementary and secondary students.

He said to address the lack of classrooms, the division office directed school officials to schedule classes by shifts and to combine grade levels.

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Perez said Reynaldo Laguda, DepEd assistant secretary, has also issued an order for the construction of temporary learning spaces for students who could no longer use their classrooms.

Laguda also asked DepEd officials to submit a more detailed assessment of the damage as basis for reconstruction.

Danilo Despi, DepEd-Sorsogon Schools Division superintendent, said Sorsogon would need at least 569 temporary learning spaces.

He said 550 classrooms were destroyed by the typhoon, valued at P605 million, while another 933 classrooms suffered major damage, costing P326.5 million.

Another P12.8 million was lost to minor damage in 1,218 classrooms, Despi added.

Damaged instructional materials included 98,321 textbooks while 984 computers were destroyed, he added.

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TAGS: Evacuation, evacuee, Nona, Sorsogon, Southern Luzon, Typhoon
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