Nat’l budget for educ sector, still insufficient – needs aid from partners, donors

LEGAZPI CITY –Despite having the biggest share of fund within the national budget, with P633.3 billion in 2022 and P710.6 billion in 2023, the education sector still feels the need for financial assistance from its partners and donors. This is according to Engr. Ronald Asis, Department of Education (DepEd) Region V – Educational Support Services Division (ESSD).

On Monday, January 23, during the launching of the two-day Capacity Building on Partnership and Finalization of Brigada Eskwela Reports attended by the schools division offices (SDOs) at the Lotus Blu Hotel in Legazpi City, Engr. Asis said:

“Dapat maimprove ‘yung partnerships sa mga stakeholders natin although sinasabi nga [na the] Department of Education received the biggest slice of the budget kaya lang when it is divided to the different schools all over the Philippines, napaka liit po niyan and we really need partners and donors para makatulong sa programs, projects ng ating mga paaralan,” 

According to Ma. Eloisa Arellano, Senior Education Program specialist of the SDO of Albay and president of Bicol Association of Partnership Coordinators (BAPC), one of the division’s problem aside from the ‘insufficient’ budget is topography in terms of reaching out to schools in far-flung areas for the implementation of their projects. 

“Admittedly, the budget that we have is really not enough to make both ends meet for the schools division office in Albay in particular and all our 556 schools and the kind of partners that we have, isa kasi sa mga problema namin is really topography, medyo malalayo ‘yung mga schools namin, meron kaming mga schools na marireach lamang through walking or sa pagsakay lang ng habal-habal, ‘yung mga hindi pa talaga narireach masyado ng mga tao,” Arellano said in an interview with Bicol.PH. 

The 2022 generated resources for the SDOs of the region was highlighted during the event. It showed that SDO Albay has the highest generated resource among all the divisions in the region with P1,064,499,033.12. 

Assistant Regional Director Ronelo Al Firmo congratulated the attendees and praised their efforts in making education accessible for all. 

“Saludo ako sainyo, maraming maraming salamat, at magpapatuloy pa rin tayo sa Brigada Eskwela at pati na rin sa Brigada Pagbasa,” Firmo said. | Danica Roselyn Lim