20,636 RP SCHOOLS HAVE NO PRINCIPALS

MANILA, September 24, 2003 (STAR) By Paolo Romero  - Here’s another shortage suffered by the public school system: Lack of principals.

Bukidnon Rep. Juan Miguel Zubiri said yesterday that half of the country’s public schools do not have principals. Citing a report from the Department of Education (DepEd), Zubiri said 20,636 of 41,121 public schools nationwide lack principals.

Of these "principal-less" schools, 19,312 are elementary schools and 1,323 are high schools.

Added to that, Zubiri said, it may take at least a decade before all public schools get their own principals, considering the rate at which the government creates items for principals.

Despite the shortage of principals, DepEd’s proposed P110.5-billion budget for 2004 submitted by Malacañang to the House does not fund a single new principal position, he said.

Zubiri also said he is endorsing the proposal that DepEd convert 2,500 of the 10,000 new teaching positions to be created next year into positions for principals. This proposal also includes the promotion of 1,675 teachers-in-charge to the post of principal.

Filling the 20,636 vacant principal posts will cost the government $3.26 billion in salaries annually, Zubiri said, but added that filling these vacancies will redound to the good of basic education.

Creating more items for principals will create a management position in schools for teachers deserving of promotion.

The principal shortage, Zubiri said, comes in the wake of the reported shortage of classrooms, teachers, textbooks and desks. The public school system still needs 15,060 classrooms, 11,054 teachers, 9.9 million textbooks and 4.12 million seats to meet students’ needs.


Reported by: Sol Jose Vanzi

© Copyright, 2003  by PHILIPPINE HEADLINE NEWS ONLINE
All rights reserved


PHILIPPINE HEADLINE NEWS ONLINE [PHNO] WEBSITE