DepEd learning tools get budget hike
The Manila Times
BUDGET Secretary Amenah Pangandaman said Monday that the Department of Education’s (DepEd) learning materials and education facilities got a major boost in the proposed 2024 national budget. DepEd’s Basic Education Facilities Program was given a significant 44-percent increase in the 2024 National Expenditure Program (NEP), amounting to P33.755 billion compared to its P23.417 billion allocation in 2023. “Through revitalized education, I aspire to provide every Filipino with a fighting chance to manage life’s uncertainties so they can choose to achieve their full potential,” Pangandaman said in a statement. The said program will focus on nine areas, including the construction of 7,879 new classrooms and technical vocational laboratories; the repair and rehabilitation of 10,050 classrooms; the procurement of 21,557 sets of school desks, furniture and fixtures; the electrification of 432 classrooms; and the construction of 333 priority school health facilities, three medium-rise school buildings, 72 library hubs, 16 Special Needs Education-Inclusive Learning Resource Centers, and four Alternative Learning System (ALS)Community Learning Centers (CLCs). These projects will be implemented nationwide, including in underserved areas. Meanwhile, various infrastructure projects of state universities and colleges were also allocated P3.4 billion. President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. earlier said in his budget message that improving education facilities was essential for creating a conducive learning environment for all learners, including those in remote and hard-to-reach areas. To support the government’s agenda for education, P12 billion was allotted for textbooks and other instructional materials, which include learning packages, resources for library hubs, and printed materials aligned with the new curriculum for Kinder and Grades 1, 4 and 7. An additional P3.9 billion was allocated to fund the procurement of learning tools, including science and mathematics, and technical vocational and livelihood equipment. Furthermore, the DepEd Computerization Program was allocated P8.9 billion to procure learning cart packages, laptops for teachers and non-teaching personnel, and ICT equipment to establish the Matatag Center in 2024.