Press Release
March 6, 2007

Build more libraries - Recto
Name after writers 60 libraries to be built this year

Senator Ralph Recto wants 60 libraries to be established next year to be named after noted Filipino writers, saying these facilities would not only honor deceased writers but also encourage the youth and adults alike to develop a passion for reading.

Rectos proposal comes in the wake of the finding that three in every four recent elementary school graduates cannot read without assistance.

This sorry figure should jolt all of us into intensifying our efforts to make pupils read and develop the fondness for books that do not only inform but also prepare young minds to acquire deeper knowledge on science, mathematics, economics and other fields, the senator stressed.

When 75 percent of these young people cannot read sans help, it means the Department of Education (DepEd) has to make up for the slack, go back to the drawing boards and promote reading and understanding, he added.

DepEd will put up this year 60 library hubs and 12 Regional Education Learning Centers (RELCs).

These hubs will perform the role of book depots for the use of surrounding schools while RELCs can be used by teachers to develop their skills in teaching reading and as learning malls for students.

Government will spend P120 million this year to build the first batch of these textbook centrals and reading malls.

Initially, each library hub will contain 50,000 books. They will serve as wholesale libraries that will lend books by the hundreds to elementary schools to promote in-school reading program, DepEd said

The DepEd is also encouraging the private sector to donate more books to these library hubs aside from helping out in maintaining them. Donations are of course tax deductible, Recto said.

On the other hand, the RELC will serve as a regional base for in-service training and the development of indigenous instructional materials.

Theyll serve as workshops for the creation of books that serve local needs, Recto explained.

Recto said the government plans to build 300 library hubs in the next few years.

He has proposed that each library be named after a deceased local writer, to honor his or her work and to make him a model for the young.

For example, the one in Manila can be named after Nick Joaquin, and in Quezon City, after Franz Arcellana. If one will be put up in Pangasinan, it can be called Carlos Bulosan Library. The Davao hub can be in honor of Alfrredo Navarro Salanga. Pateros children may soon be borrowing books from the Emman Lacaba public library.

The list is endless. The best way to honor our writers is to name after them places where children go to read, Recto said.

News Latest News Feed