Education High on Team Unity Agenda

May. 07, 2007

MANILA — Team Unity senatorial candidates have vowed to prioritize education in the coming Congress as a way to bridge the gap between the poor and the rich in this country.

Senatorial candidate Tessie Aquino-Oreta said that given the correct and adequate education, the country’s youth would grow as productive individuals who could free themselves from generational poverty.

“I would continue to fight for quality education for our children because education is the great equalizer. You may not be rich but you could progress using your education,” she said, in a radio interview.

Oreta said young Filipinos are the future of the country, and by equipping them with the correct education, they could drive the country towards development.

“If they have a good foundation, they could become our future leaders, our future businessmen,” she said.

Oreta said Team Unity’s care for the children’s welfare is aptly contained in its mnemonic “MaS PARA SA KiDZ Mo,” which means more for the children.

“Our mnemonic talks of performance of what we can do for our children, for their future. We should set aside political bickering, which would only lead the country into oblivion,” she said.

Earlier, Team Unity has laid out its platform of overhauling and modernizing the country’s educational system to produce more and better graduates.

The administration coalition slate stressed that there is a need to strengthen the curriculum and implement a nationwide “free pre-school program” geared towards providing the essential education to children at an early age.

Oreta has pledged to press for a free pre-school program all over the country to prepare children in entering their elementary years.

“I believe we can do it and we have to. When that becomes an integral part of our educational ladder, that will have been a major achievement,” she said.

Oreta and fellow TU bet Edgardo Angara are two of Team Unity’s senatorial candidates most-expected to push education issues and the same ones who will get the majority of the education votes, according to a University of the Philippines (UP) survey.

A telephone survey was conducted by an independent group, UP Population Institute (UPPI), Demographic Research and Development, which showed that of the 552 respondents from across the country, 245 persons identified Oreta as the senator most concerned with education, followed by Angara with 74.

The majority of the respondents said they “intend to vote” for the two candidates as well.

The survey covered both school principals, schools teachers and employees of the Department of Education in the district and division level.

The survey validated the TU campaign leadership’s claim that the education vote, a low-key but potent voting sector, will be enough to push the candidacy of Oreta into the winning circle.###

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