CAGAYAN – Teachers of students in Zinundungan Valley in the town of Rizal here have a common Christmas wish this year – that the road leading to Barangays Masi, San Juan, and Rizal be rehabilitated to allow for faster and more comfortable travel.
“Sana po mas mabilis ang pagsasaayos ng daan para mas mabilis ang transportasyong ng mga tao at pati na din kaming mga guro (We’re hoping that the rehabilitation of the road be fast-tracked so that the people, and us, teachers, will be able to travel faster to these areas),” teacher Stive Lagua told The Manila Bulletin.
Residents, as well as teachers, have had to walk for hours to reach these far-flung barangays of Rizal town because the road, made of gravel, could not be used by motor vehicles.
The teachers of Illuru National High School, in particular, have had to walk for several kilometers, carrying loads of modules and summative tests at least once a week just to facilitate the education of their students in these barangays.
“Obligado na ihatid at kunin ang modules dahil sa panahon ng pandemic (We are obligated to deliver and retrieve the modules because of the pandemic,” Lagua added.
Worse, if the weather does not cooperate, the teachers’ ordeal is made more difficult, or they couldn’t travel at all.
“Depende din sa weather pag malakas ang ulan hindi na kami nakaka-travel (It also depends on the weather. If it rains, we can’t travel),“ he added.
Public Works and Highways Secretary Mark A. Villar announced in 2019 that better road connection in Zinundungan Valley will be serviceable soon with the upgrade of the 3.1-kilometer gravel road.