Press Release
July 26, 2012

Drilon asks DepEd to review classrooms construction price

Senate Finance Committee chairman Franklin M. Drilon today asked the Department of Education (DepEd) to review the construction cost of the classrooms it builds with the end in view of lowering its price to be able to build more classrooms.

During the Thursday's committee performance review of the DepEd 2012 budget, Drilon was surprised to know that the price of the classroom being constructed by the agency costs P10,000 per square meter for a single unit of classroom.

Drilon said DepEd price is much higher when compared to his classrooms being built in partnership with the Federation of the Filipino Chinese Chambers of Commerce and Industry, Inc. (FCCCII) which costs only P6,000 per square meter.

"I have been building classrooms with the help of the (FFCCCII) since 2002 at a price significantly lower than those being built by your agency and the with the help of the Department of Public Works and Highways," said Drilon, adding that about 1,500 classrooms were already constructed under the Drilon-FFCCCII partnership.

The price of a single 9x7 square meter classroom being constructed under the DepEd costs about P650,000, whereas a Drilon classroom only costs P325,000, noted the Finance Committee chair.

Education Secretary Armin Luistro, for his part, vowed to seriously look into the issue brought out by Drilon. Drilon and Senate Committee on Education chairman Edgardo J. Angara also asked Luistro to come up with a plan as to how they plan to address the 66,800 classroom backlogs that the President promised to be solved by next year during his third state of the nation address.

Meanwhile, Drilon said the DepEd's budget will increase by 22.6 percent in the proposed P2.006-trillion national budget, equivalent to P292.7 billion from its present allocation of P238.8 billion.

"This huge increase is a move to address the problems that have been hounding basic public education in the country and to attain the government's reform agenda to provide quality education as a way to invest in the people," ended Drilon.

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