By Betheena Unite
More than 4,000 additional classrooms are under construction in various places in the country in an attempt to address the shortage of classrooms, the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) said.
The department, according to Public Works and Highways Secretary Mark Villar, “is rushing the completion of classroom projects nationwide” under the convergence program with the Department of Education (DepEd).
“DepEd allocated a total of P13.43 billion in the 2019 General Appropriations Act (GAA) for the construction of additional school building facilities with 4,810 classrooms. So far we have completed and turned over 368 classrooms,” Villar said.
“DPWH Regional and District Engineering Offices nationwide are also pushing to complete 4,414 classrooms that are now under civil works, and 28 more that will start construction soon. Hopefully, these will be turned over in time for the coming 2020-2021 school year,” the secretary added.
Based on the fiscal year 2019 Basic Educational Facilities Fund (BEFF), additional classrooms are being built in Regions 1 to 13 and in Metro Manila.
The massive educational project covers 616 classrooms in the National Capital Region amounting to P1.95 billion; 66 classrooms for Cordillera Administrative Region costing P185.09 million; 534 classrooms for Region 1 costing P1.34 billion; 87 classrooms for Region 2 costing P189.84 million; 933 classrooms for Region 3 costing P2.56 billion;
807 classrooms for Region 4A costing P2.14 billion; 44 classrooms for Region 4B costing P153.94 million; 393 classrooms for Region 5 costing P1.35 billion; 198 classrooms for Region 6 costing P478.62 million; 278 classrooms for Region 7 costing P766.96 million; 191 classrooms for Region 8 costing P472.98 million;
123 classrooms for Region 9 costing P303.17 million; 164 classrooms for Region 10 costing P500.95 million; 159 classrooms for Region 11 costing P488.08 million; 96 classrooms for Region 12 costing P241.66 million; and 12 classrooms for Region 13 costing P303.69 million.
Meanwhile, the department recently reported the completion of four school buildings in three different provinces in the country.
Two new school facilities — a multi-purpose covered court and a two-story laboratory building — at Sara National High School (SNHS) in Iloilo were recently inaugurated. The facilities now serve as venues for various academic, social, and cultural activities.
With almost 4,000 students in SNHS, the ICT building not only provides the proper facility conducive to learning but also a solution to student congestion problem due to lack of classrooms, SNHS Principal Lolita Datoon said.
Furthermore, a new three-storey laboratory building in Libertad National High School (NHS) in the town of Abulug, Cagayan is nearing completion, the agency said.
The educational facility, which houses six laboratory rooms and three classrooms, aims to accommodate some 400 senior high school students. Its construction came after a three-storey laboratory building with two laboratory rooms and five classrooms was completed.
A two-storey building that houses four classrooms was also recently completed to cater to four grade school classes in Malaga National High School (MNHS), in Calbayog City, Samar.
“Since 2011, the lack of classrooms has been the school’s perennial problem,” DPWH Region 8 Director Nerie Bueno said.