THE Education Department reiterated its call for the realignment of the disapproved confidential funds with its National Learning Recovery Program (NLRP).
Saying such a move will be “very useful” for students, Education Assistant Secretary Francis Cesar Bringas noted that during a recent hearing, senators seemed “very serious” on providing additional funds for the Department of Education’s (DepEd) “Government Assistance for Private Education (GASTPE)” program, which prompted Vice President and Education Secretary Sara Z. Duterte to request instead for the realignment of the funds amounting to P150 million.
In an interview at the Bagong Pilipinas Ngayon briefing, Bringas explained in Filipino that the request of the secretary during the hearing is to re-focus the confidential funds with the department’s NLRP, as it will bring more impact to our learners, considering that the country is still recovering from losses in learning not only during the pandemic, but even prior.
The assistant secretary reassured that DepEd will still improve the basic education’s literacy levels—including the implementation of programs focusing on the well-being of learners to protect them against external threats deemed detrimental to their development not only as students, but as citizens of the country.
He pointed out that in the DepEd curriculum, there is peace education meant to develop the appreciation of learners for peace, patriotism and nationalism.
During the Senate plenary debates, Duterte assured that even without confidential funds, DepEd will try its best to eliminate threats to the learning environment, as well as work for the safety and security of its personnel.
According to DepEd, threats needing surveillance- and intelligence-gathering may include sexual abuse and all other forms of violence; graft and corruption; learners’ and personnel’s involvement in illegal drugs; recruitment for insurgency, terrorism, and violent extremism; child labor; child pornography; as well as recruitment for criminal activities, gangsterism, and financial and other scams.
In the same hearing, Sen. Ronald dela Rosa made a manifestation where he urged teachers to be extra vigilant on the possible recruitment of insurgents from among basic education learners.
Image credits: Deped FB/PNA