Unused classrooms despite shortage

By Futch Anthony Inso July 12,2018

SOME school buildings in Cebu province remained vacant despite completion, a report from the Commission on Audit (COA) stated.

Amaryllis Villarmia, information officer of the Department of Education (DepEd) 7, said they are now coordinating with the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) to clarify the report.

“Supposedly the contractor should be the one to secure permits, because they cannot start the project unless they secure one at the Office of the Building Official.” Villarmia said.

Various reasons for the non-utilization of these school buildings include the lack of water and electrical power connection, non-issuance of a certificate of occupancy, absence of building permits and minor defects that need to be repaired by the contractor.

“We have a budget for the maintenance and the payment of water and electrical bill under the school’s maintenance and other operating expenses (MOOE),” Villarmia said.

There are three unused school buildings at the Bantayan National High School, two school buildings at the Daanbantayan National High School, a four-storey building with eight classrooms at the Mohon National High School in Talisay City, a two-storey building with four classrooms in Calagasan National High School in Argao town, and two school buildings at Pajac Elementary School and Poblacion Public School.

Villarmia said that even if there are on going works, the two school buildings in Lapu-Lapu were already occupied by the students.

“Because there was a shortage of classrooms, that’s why the school heads have decided to use them,” Villarmia added.

“The Basic Educational Facilities Fund was intended to address the surmounting classroom shortage that schools are experiencing at present.

Thus, the non-utilization of the completed school buildings due to lack of electricity and water and school facilities and delayed turnover, hindered the delivery of quality basic education to the intended beneficiaries,” COA said.

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