President Aquino upbears universal kindergarten with P2.4-B fund

March 2, 2012 10:24 am 

MANILA, March 1 — Reinforcing his commitment to improve basic education in the country and broaden its accessibility to all Filipinos, President Benigno S. Aquino III has set aside some P2.39 billion under the 2012 General Appropriations Act (GAA) to support the newly passed Republic Act 10157, also known as the Kindergarten Education Act.

“With the Kindergarten Education Act now in place, we can give more Filipino children a stronger foundation for scholastic excellence and achievement. Of course, the law will require funding for its efficient implementation, and the Aquino government has addressed this need by releasing funds that were earmarked to support the law,” said Budget and Management Secretary Florencio B. Abad.

The P2.39-billion fund, which is covered by this year’s P238.8-billion budget for basic education, was released through the agency budget matrix before January 2012.

The early release will help facilitate the prompt execution of the universal kindergarten law for school year 2012-2013.

Abad noted that the 2012 appropriation for the Universal Kindergarten Law is higher than last year’s budget for kindergarten education, which amounted to P2.34 billion.

Under the Kindergarten Education Act, Filipino children from five years old and above will be required to undergo and pass kindergarten before moving up to Grade 1.

The execution of this law in all public schools will help young children buckle up properly before entering elementary education.

“The President is determined to meet the Millennium Development Goals, particularly with respect to providing quality education for all by 2015. The passage of the universal kindergarten law only strengthens our platform for poverty reduction and sustained socio-economic growth, and we are looking forward to introducing more innovations in the way we educate our youth,” Abad said.

The Department of Education (DepEd) takes the lion’s share in the Social Services budget for 2012, which comprises 31.7 percent or P575.8 billion of this year’s GAA.

The education budget posted a 15.2-percent jump from the 2011 budget, in line with government efforts to ramp up public educational services across the country. PNA)



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