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Binay to give priority to schools

CHILDREN’S education and the construction of new school buildings and classrooms will be the priority of Vice President Jejomar Binay should he win the 2016 elections, his spokesman said Thursday.

“Vice President Jejomar Binay believes that education is the greatest social equalizer and an effective vehicle for poverty reduction,” Joey Salgado said.

“He finds it unfortunate that this administration has failed to prioritize the construction and repair of school buildings and classrooms for kindergarten students. Investing in our children’s education is his top priority.”

Salgado cited Northern Mindanao, which has  15,000 kindergarten enrollees yearly but does not have enough classrooms.

“The vice president believes that with the youth educated and prepared for the outside world, they can join the work-force with the qualifications needed to excel in their chosen field,” Salgado said.

“They will earn good income which, in turn, will translate to a better life for each and every Filipino.”

Salgado said a strong work-force will boost the  economy and the gains of such a vibrant economy will redound to the benefit of all Filipinos.

“It is sad that this administration failed to prioritize the needs of kindergarten students, kindergarten being the first and important step in the education ladder,” he said.

He noted that while the government has enacted Republic Act 10157 or “The Kindergarten Education Act,” the support needed to ensure the implementation of the law has not been given priority.

Salgado said despite the P14.1-billion fund allocated in the 2013 budget for the construction, replacement and completion of kindergarten, elementary and secondary buildings, there is still an acute classroom shortage.

The Commission on Audit says only P3,311,610.00 was allotted by the Department of Education in 2011 for the construction of four kindergarten classrooms with furniture, so that the shortage of classrooms deprives more than 15,000 kindergarten enrollees every year.

“There were some classrooms built but there is a shortage. We need those classrooms constructed immediately particularly for the kindergarten students,” Salgado said.

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