Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation

New PAGCOR buildings bring joy to schoolchildren in Davao

Thursday | November 23, 2017 | 10:00 AM

New PAGCOR buildings bring joy to schoolchildren in Davao
The three-story, 18-classroom school building donated by PAGCOR to SBES. Three more schools in Davao – the F. Bustamante Central Elementary, Imelda Elementary School and Catalunan Pequeno National High School – each received a multi-storey building from PAGCOR.

DAVAO City –Pails on hand, students and teachers waded through shin-deep floodwater to salvage books and other school equipment. This was the scene at the Sixto Babao Elementary School (SBES) when a storm hit Davao region less than a year ago.

Located in Barangay Ilang in Bunawan, a coastline community in Davao City, SBES is the only elementary school in the district. It has over 2,200 students for the school year 2017-2018.

Aliminda Castanares, SBES School-In-Charge, had been with the school for a little over a year but she faced numerous issues at the school since day one. Apart from the occasional flooding and muddy school grounds that everyone had gotten used to, the lack of classrooms for the ever increasing student population is still a main concern.

Castanares shared that out of the school’s 48 classrooms, only 24 are functional since the other rooms are either termite-infested or too small to accommodate the school’s growing population. “Sa isang classroom mga 50 to 68 pupils ang gumagamit,” she said.

She added that most classrooms were constructed in the 1950’s and could not be used anymore as the structure’s nearby sewerage system is already beyond repair. “Yung ibang classrooms hindi na namin talaga magamit dahil sa sobrang kalumaan. Madidilim tapos hindi na maganda ang amoy na pumapasok sa classroom. Marami pang scaffolding sa taas kaya delikado na talaga sa mga bata.”

New PAGCOR buildings bring joy to schoolchildren in Davao
Pupils of Imelda Elementary School (IES) in Davao express their gratitude to PAGCOR after accepting the three-storey, 18-classroom school building from the state-run gaming agency.

When SBES was chosen as one of the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation’s (PAGCOR) school building project, Castanares and her fellow educators at the SBES felt a sense of relief. The school received a three-storey, 18-classroom school building from PAGCOR.

According to Castanares, there is still classroom shortage in their school but the new PAGCOR-funded classrooms will help reduce the student-to-classroom ratio of 1:68 to at least 1:47. ”After the new school building was constructed, even our teachers were excited to transfer. We were all happy because the rooms were very spacious and conducive for learning. Sabi namin, ang taas na building, hindi na tayo babahain. This was just a dream then. But now, it has become a reality. We were all really hoping for this.”

Apart from SBES, three other public schools in Davao City also recently received new school buildings from PAGCOR. Among them were F. Bustamante Central Elementary and Imelda Elementary School which both received a three-storey, 18-classroom school buildings. Meanwhile, Catalunan Pequeno National High School received a two-storey, ten-classroom school building.

To date, a total of 149 PAGCOR-funded school buildings have already been completed in Davao.

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