Lawmaker urges DepEd to fully implement Child and Youth Welfare Code

July 6, 2012 9:27 pm 

MANILA, July 6 – Rep. Winston Castelo (2nd dist., Quezon City, urged the Department of Education (DepEd) to fully implement Presidential Decree 603, or the Child and Youth Welfare Code.

Castelo said every Filipino, from age 6 to 24, has the right to go to school and finish his or her studies from elementary to secondary levels under Presidential Decree 603, which protects the right to education of children especially the underprivileged.

He said the law was not fully implemented by the government because there were still 11.6 million Filipinos aged 6 to 24 who are yet to be enrolled in schools.

Castelo filed House Resolution 2325, urging the House Committee on Basic Education to find out why the DepEd was having a hard time implementing PD 603.

"Poverty and unsupportable parents are some of the reasons why many out-of-school youth (OSY) are not given a chance to go to school," Castelo said.

Likewise, Castelo said a student stops going to school due to bad peer pressure, bad vices such as addiction, the sense of isolation felt by children of OFW parents, child labor or illegal employment of children below 18 years old and armed conflict in the case of Mindanao.

"PD 603, also known as the Child and Youth Welfare Code, wants no children being refused admission in public schools," Castelo said.

Castelo said the Constitution states that all Filipinos should get free education from elementary to secondary levels. State-owned universities also offer scholarship grants to high school graduates.

Castelo also cited Article 78 of PD 603 prohibiting all schools to receive or collect from student, directly or indirectly, contributions of any kind of form, or for any purpose except those expressly provided by law, and on occasions of national or local disasters, the school may accept voluntary contribution or aid from students for distribution of disasters or calamities.

"The Constitution gives priority to education, science and technology, arts, culture, and sports to foster patriotism and nationalism, accelerate social progress, and promote total human liberation and development," Castelo said. (PNA) RMA/PR/utb

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