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Legarda Commends DepEd’s Programs for IPs, Heritage Schools

June 17, 2013

Senator Loren Legarda today lauded the Department of Education for the allotment of funds for indigenous peoples’ (IP) education and expressed support to the agency’s effort to conserve heritage schools in the country.

Legarda, Chair of the Senate Committee on Cultural Communities, noted that the DepEd has allotted P100 million, which will be distributed to 100 school divisions nationwide, to fund education capacity-building initiatives for IPs such as training for implementers of IP Education (IPEd) program, engaging in partnership programs with concerned organizations, and creating an IP database.

“I am glad with these culture and heritage related initiatives of DepEd. I hope that the funds will be effectively used not only for the delivery of quality education to our IPs but also for the preservation and promotion of their culture and heritage,” she said.

“We must guarantee that our IPs have access to quality education to increase their chances for employment and make them competent and competitive in the workplace,” she added.

Meanwhile, Legarda said that the DepEd directive to make an inventory and conserve the country’s heritage school buildings known as Gabaldons, which were built during the American period, is significant to efforts to preserve heritage and promote history.

“These Gabaldon schools, like the heritage houses built during the Spanish period, speak much about our history. I hope we can still revive all these school buildings not just for display but to be used for their original purpose as places of learning,” said Legarda, noting that some of the structures are either in poor condition or have been abandoned already.

“As we teach the Filipino youth our nation’s culture and history, we should also inculcate in them the respect for the things that form part of our heritage, like the Gabaldon schools, because these structures have been witnesses to various events in our history and conserving them is an important part of preserving the stories of our forefathers,” she concluded.