DepEd seeks other funding sources to close 165,000 classroom gap

enablePagination: false
maxItemsPerPage: 10
maxPaginationLinks: 10


Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, March 16) — The Department of Education (DepEd) is exploring other options and sources of funding to address the classroom shortage in the country, an education official said Thursday.

In an interview with reporters, DepEd Undersecretary Epimaco Densing claimed the agency would be able to address the gap in seven years if it had a ₱100-billion budget for classroom construction on a yearly basis.

"The shortage of new classrooms is around 165,000. We're already looking at seven-year projection to address this gap, but we need ₱100 billion a year to be able to zero out the shortage of classrooms all over the country," Densing said in an event organized by the Japanese Embassy.

In 2022, the DepEd was given some ₱15.6 billion for classroom construction, equivalent to 6,421 new classrooms for 2023.

Densing said they are also eyeing to repair and renovate classrooms in order to address the lack of facilities.

"For this year, our goal is to focus on classrooms that needed repairs and rehabilitation, 20,830 being able to house learning facilities [for] more than 80,000 students," he explained.

The Japanese government has donated around ₱25.2 million under the Grant Assistance for Grass-Roots Human Security Projects (GGP). Japanese Ambassador Koshikawa Kazuhiko signed contracts on Thursday to build a two-story six-classroom elementary school building in Ilog, Negros Occidental.

The GGP scheme was launched by Japan in 1989 and has so far implemented 553 grassroots projects.

Densing has expressed gratitude for the grant by the Japanese government and hopes that they can tap more help to address classroom shortage.

"We're very happy these are sources where we can put up classroom that are outside our budget so this is our strategy right now with the shortage of classrooms all over the country we're looking sources outside our national budget," the education official added.

"This donation of Japan is a welcome development we are also looking at civil society organizations, non-government organizations, business groups to address the gap," Densing said.