Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation

PAGCOR donates 482 classrooms to public schools in five provinces

Tuesday | August 18, 2015 | 5:00 PM

PAGCOR donates 482 classrooms to public schools in five provinces
The PAGCOR-funded two-storey, 10-classroom school building at the Tayug Central Elementary School in Pangasinan would benefit the school's 1,400 students. It was constructed through the state-run gaming agency’s “Matuwid na Daan sa Silid-Aralan” project. To date, PAGCOR has already set aside P10 billion for its school building program which aims to construct thousands of classrooms in state-subsidized schools nationwide.

Over 24,000 public school students from the provinces of Davao Oriental, Pangasinan, Cavite, Iloilo and Negros Occidental have become the beneficiaries of 482 classrooms donated by the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) through its “Matuwid na Daan sa Silid-Aralan” school building project.

Of the 482 completed classrooms, 110 were constructed in 24 public schools in Davao Oriental; 98 were donated to 17 public schools in Pangasinan; 75 were given to seven public schools in Negros Occidental; 87 were turned over to 14 public schools in Iloilo; and 112 were built in 12 public schools in Cavite.

PAGCOR’s school building project is being carried out in partnership with the Department of Education (DepEd) and the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH). As of June 2015, a total of 1,739 new classrooms had been completed nationwide. Thousands more are being built in various provinces including areas heavily devastated by super typhoon Yolanda.

PAGCOR Chairman and CEO Cristino Naguiat, Jr., who has been leading the turn-over and groundbreaking rites of thousands of classrooms in public schools, said the agency’s donations will help address the classroom shortage in state-subsidized schools and replace their dilapidated buildings with more decent learning facilities.

“By building these new classrooms, we are helping the DepEd and the government in promoting quality education in our public schools. We want the students and their teachers to have the best facilities to make learning easier and as much as possible hassle-free for the school children,” Naguiat said.

The PAGCOR chief explains the agency is able to fund the construction of thousands of classrooms all over the country primarily due to the prudent management of its earnings.  The agency’s total funding for the school building program now stands at a staggering P10 billion.

PAGCOR donates 482 classrooms to public schools in five provinces
The students of Badas National High School in Mati City, Davao Oriental are the new beneficiaries of a one-storey, three-classroom school building donated by PAGCOR.

“One of the school building project’s recent beneficiaries – the Tayug Central Elementary School (TCES) in Pangasinan – is extremely grateful to PAGCOR for responding to their urgent need for new classrooms. While TCES has 36 functional classrooms for its 1,400 students, most of these buildings are already over half a century old.

Apart from their dilapidated classrooms, TCES Principal Teody Tagare said that since their 10-classroom Gabaldon building was razed by fire 15 years ago, the school never had the chance to build a new one due to lack of funds.

“Mula nang masunog yung Gabaldon building namin, talagang hirap na hirap kaming pagkasyahin sa mga natira naming classrooms ang mga estudyante. Siksikan sila sa klase at maski yung mga teachers nahihirapang magturo kasi mainit at luma na yung mga classrooms na ginagamit nila.  Kaya’t talagang napakalaking ginhawa ang maidudulot sa amin ng bagong building na bigay ng PAGCOR,” Tagare said.

Meantime, the thickly-populated Bata National High School (BNHS) in Bacolod City with over 2,000 enrollees heaved a euphoric sigh of relief following PAGCOR’s donation of a four-storey, 20-classroom school building.

Due to lack of school buildings, hundreds of students in BNHS endure having classes in the oven-hot gymnasium, oftentimes sharing space with those having Physical Education (PE) lessons and “Sepak Takraw” players who are training.

“PAGCOR is such a great blessing to our school.  From now on, our gym will solely be used for athletics and other purposes and not as a classroom.  Napakaraming makikinabang sa aming bagong school building at siguradong magiging komportable na ang aming mga estudyante sa kanilang pag-aaral,” said BNHS Principal Evelyn Casiano.

In Cavite, 4th District Representative Elpidio Barzaga, Jr. said PAGCOR did not hesitate to respond to the educational needs of his constituents. “We’re very fortunate that PAGCOR is our formidable partner in upholding the education of the youth,” Barzaga stated.

Meanwhile, Imus City Mayor Emmanuel Maliksi, who was present during the groundbreaking ceremony of a four-storey, 20-classroom building in Imus Pilot Elementary School (IPES) said the new building is a big blessing to IPES which has over 4,000 students.

“Napakalaki ng magiging impact nitong itatayong school building dahil libong mag-aaral ang gagamit nito. Dahil maganda na ang pasilidad, hindi na kailangan mag-klase sa hallway at kung saan man. Mas makakapag-focus na ang mga teacher sa pagtu-turo at pagbi-bigay ng quality education sa mga bata,” Maliksi said. He further stressed that the impact of PAGCOR’s support to the education sector would be felt not only by the schools but also by the community.

PAGCOR also recently turned over a total of 23 classrooms to five public national high schools in Davao Oriental. The construction of the additional classrooms augurs well for the school beneficiaries as they prepare for the implementation of the K-12 program next year.

Located in areas inhabited mostly by indigent families, the Banaybanay National High School, Lupon National High School, Leandro Japos National High School, Badas National High School and Don Salvador Lopez National High School are expecting heavy influx of enrollees from these communities next school year.

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