By Merlina Hernando-Malipot
Education Secretary Leonor Briones acknowledged contribution of local officials to education – especially in addressing needs of learners and teachers in their respective areas.
“I would like to acknowledge the help, the inspiration, and the support of the local government and the provincial government which have been so supportive to all that we are doing,” said Briones during the groundbreaking ceremony for the construction of Gen. Gregorio Del Pilar National High School (NHS), and the presentation of the scale model of Pandi National High School (Virginia Ramirez-Cruz High School Extension) at the Gen. Gregorio Del Pilar Elementary School Compound in Brgy. Sta. Ana, Bulakan, Bulacan recently.
“Alam naman natin na hindi susulong ang layunin ng ating departamento or anumang aktibidades ng national government kung walang kooperasyon at suporta ang mga local governments (We all know that our department’s goal or any national government activity will not go forward if local governments do not cooperate and support,” Briones added.
Briones, along with President Rodrigo Duterte, headed the said groundbreaking ceremony. Joining them in laying the time capsule for the construction of Gen. Gregorio Del Pilar NHS were Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Secretary Fortunato dela Peña, DepEd Undersecretary Alain Del Pascua, Assistant Secretary Revsee Escobedo, Region III Director Beatriz Torno, and Bulacan officials led by Governor Wilhelmino Sy-Alvarado.
“I am glad to join you today as we break ground on two secondary school facilities that will soon rise here in the province of Bulacan,” Duterte said. “Once completed, these buildings will serve as a testament to our commitment to invest in the potential of the youth,” he added. These structures, he explained, will “promote their well-being, nurture their dreams, and become a breeding ground for future leaders of our country.”
The two units of four-story school buildings of Gen. Gregorio Del Pilar NHS will have a total of 60 classrooms to be built on a 6,676-square meter lot. It is expected to house over 2,300 students up to Grade 12 after four years.
Expected to be completed in November this year, the project has an allocation of P161.4-M budget under the DepEd CY 2018 Basic Education Facilities Fund (BEFF), with the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) Bulacan First District Engineering Office as the implementing agency.
Another highlight of the event was the unveiling and presentation of the school building plan of Pandi NHS, as witnessed by First District Representative Jose Antonio-Sy Alvarado, Bulakan Mayor Patrick Meneses, and Pandi Mayor Celestino Marquez.
The Pandi NHS project, meanwhile, has four units of four-story school buildings with a total of 80 classrooms, to be constructed on a 19,296-square meter lot. Set to be completed in October this year, the school to be built in Siling Bata, Pandi, Bulacan, has a budget allocation of P190.9 M. The establishment of the said school buildings is expected to decongest the overpopulated secondary schools nearby.