2 Million New Books Expected for Davao Provinces

Jun. 06, 2006

DAVAO CITY — The Department of Education (DepEd) in Southern Mindanao is expecting the arrival of some two million books to augment the present number of books in the region.

This was bared by Minnie Fabros, DepEds spokesperson in the region, who also admitted that the present student-book ratio is still 1:3.

The supply of books for public school students is still not enough. However, students can look forward to the arrival of 2 million books, although on a staggered basis, she said.

The new books could solve the book shortage, which is a perennial problem of the education department.

However, DepEd regional director Diamar Kadon claimed that elementary students in the public schools were given the right number of books needed for their academic subjects. Kadon said more books are needed for the high school students.

The region is expecting a two percent increase in enrolment compared to last years 587,561 enrolled pupils in the elementary.

The increase in the enrolment is expected due to the influx of private-school students who transferred to public schools due to financial reasons.

The department is implementing the 0% rejection of private school transferees that is why we welcome anybody who wish to transfer from the private institution, Fabros said.

Meanwhile, on a national scale, the government has built about 14,000 new classrooms and 3,000 new teachers have been hired since 2001 as the Arroyo administration prioritizes the improvement of the public school system.

About 250 million pesos is allotted for early childhood education which benefited at least 100,000 pre-schoolers.

Another program which Arroyo is pushing is the distribution of school vouchers that would allow students from the public schools to enroll and study in private schools with their tuition shouldered by the government.

This way we are decongesting our public schools and at the same time taking advantage of the presence of private institutions where students can spend their schooling, Kadon said.

Recently, PGMA ordered the distribution of high school vouchers to almost 400,000 students to enable them to study at private schools. (Mai Gevera/Philippine Information Agency)

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