P176.4 million new public classrooms turned over in typhoon-hit areas

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Province of Davao Oriental – The Department of Education and Department of Public Works and Highways turned over an initial 204 new classrooms to public elementary and high schools in the typhoon-hit towns of Baganga and Cateel.

Teachers and students say these new classrooms symbolize new hope and new beginning for the education sector here that was badly battered after typhoon Pablo ‘washed out’ many of their school buildings in 2012.

According to the Assistant Engineer of the DPWH District Office, Alberto Cainghug, the national government had earmarked a total of P558 million for the construction 590 classrooms required in the entire first district, which already include the 204 recently turned over classrooms.

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“These [new classrooms] answer the long-pressing problem on the shortage of schoolrooms in the disaster-hit areas,” said first district representative, Congressman Nelson Dayanghirang, who helped usher the release of funds for these new infrastructures.

Implemented by the DPWH, the funding was sourced out from the Typhoon Pablo rehabilitation fund, which was coursed through the DepEd.

Amidst the massive rehabilitation efforts of the government, Dayanghirang noted the significant increase in the number of schools at present compared to what schools had before the disaster.

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Governor Corazon N. Malanyaon and Congressman Nelson Dayanghirang led the ceremonial ribbon cutting of one of the classrooms turned over by the DepEd and DPWH in Baganga. Joining them are Baganga Vice Mayor Ramona Olea, Mayor Arturo Monday, DepEd Assistant Schools Division Superintendent Feliciano Tambundong, Jr ., and Board Member Roland V. Lara

Aside from that, he also reported that these new buildings were constructed and designed to be typhoon-resistant and can sustain strong winds of up to 250 kph. “This modification is important as we realize schools are the primary refuge of families during calamities,” he said.

Meanwhile, Governor Corazon N. Malanyaon, who graced the turnover and blessing ceremonies, congratulated the teachers and students headed by DepEd Assistant Schools Division Superintendent, Feliciano Tamundong, Jr.,  for the new classrooms that would hopefully give boost to the education sector.

She commended the efforts of the national and local government, along with the agencies involved for their quick interventions in the rehabilitation of schools, which is also consistent to the province’s Building Back Better Agenda.

“We now see a proliferation of infrastructures—school buildings, housing units, and government facilities. This is an indicator how fast our recovery is,” she said.

Gov. Malanyaon said these developments had been attributed to the convergence of all agencies, which are complementing each other’s the resources in order to accomplish more in a very short period of time. By KLD/ Photo by Eden Jhan Licayan

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