Congress looking for ways to secure funds for SPED program — solon

Roman Romulo rejects pilot face-to-face classes for now

MANILA, Philippines — Congress is already exploring means to secure funds for the Department of Education’s (DepEd) special education (SPED) program for next year, said Pasig Rep. Roman Romulo.

The lawmaker noted that they are looking into possibly reallocating to the SPED budget the unspent funds from other government agencies in the past years.

Taon-taon iyong ibang ahensya, hindi rin nila nagagamit nang husto iyong budget nila kasi nga iyong absorptive capacity nila ay hindi nakakayanan. Iyon ang tinitingnan natin,” he said at the Laging Handa briefing on Thursday.

(Every year, there are different government agencies that do not fully utilize their budget allocation because of their absorptive capacity, so that’s what we’re looking at.)

Romulo, chairperson of the House basic education and culture committee, expressed his belief that no one would go against their efforts to seek funds for this program, noting the importance of shaping inclusive educational spaces for learners with disabilities.

In the National Expenditure Program (NEP) for 2023, P710 billion is set aside for DepEd, which is concurrently helmed by Vice President Sara Duterte.

From this figure, not a single centavo was earmarked for the SPED program.

The DepEd budget, however, includes P150-million confidential funds which, Duterte said, is necessary as there is a “direct link” between basic education and national security. — Lyka Farillon, INQUIRER.net Intern

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