The Department of Budget and Management (DBM) approved the release of P941.3 million to the Department of Education (DepEd) for the purchase of additional chairs and tables for elementary and secondary schools all over the country.
The release will be charged against the DepEd’s Lump Sum for the Requirement of Basic Educational Facilities under the 2012 General Appropriations Act.
“This is part of the Aquino administration’s goal to boost facilities in our public schools, so that we can create a better learning environment for schoolchildren across the country. 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,” says Budget and Management Secretary Florencio B. Abad.
“With the addition of much-needed furniture, however, it will be easier for schoolchildren to pay attention to their lessons and participate in class. 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,” Abad added.
According to Abad, the chairs and tables will be distributed to schools with facility shortages, with priority given to newly constructed and still-to-be constructed school buildings. Recipient schools will be furnished 45 arm chairs for every classroom, along with a table-and-chair set for the teacher/class instructor.
Of the P941.3 million, schools in NCR will receive the largest share of the release, with their allocation amounting to P109 million. Region 4-A follows closely with P99 million, while Region 5 will receive P83 million from the total release.
Apart from purchasing 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.
Earlier this year, President Aquino approved the “K-12” program, which adds one more year in elementary education and one more year in secondary education to boost student competitiveness prior to entering college.