School buildings cost less to construct when undertaken by the LGUs.
Gov. Tomas N. Joson earlier made representations with the Department of Education and the Department of Public Works and Highways relative to the national government’s school building program, with the possibility of allowing the provincial governments to take over the construction of school buildings in order to enhance the utilization of the limited funds.
During the last National Executive Board meeting, Joson reported that during his meetings with DepEd officials, he learned that for 2006, national government’s budget for the School Building Program is good for 6,000 classrooms. The backlog is pegged at 40,000.
Joson said that if the provincial governments are allowed to undertake the construction of the school buildings, they could construct 700 to 800 more at the same cost it would take for the DPWH to build the 6,000 classrooms.
During its general assembly on February 3, the LPP is expected to enter into a MOA with the DepEd and DPWH that would allow the provincial government to directly undertake the school building program in lieu of the DPWH.
Apart from implementing and undertaking the construction of the school buildings in their respective areas of jurisdiction, each of the 79 the provincial governments will be committing to increase the number of classrooms by 30, using local funds for it, and equipping the same with all the necessary facilities, such as restrooms, electrical wirings, paintings, desks/chairs, tables and blackboards.
In order to further bring down the backlog in the number of school buildings, two other LGU leagues – the League of Cities and League of Municipalities, have counted themselves in on the project.
The LCP and LMP have agreed to appropriate funds for the construction of additional classrooms in their respective jurisdictions, with the city governments providing for 40 additional classrooms in every city and the municipal governments providing for one additional classroom in every municipality. (angelica j. sanchez)
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