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Preparations in order for first day of school academic year.

Manila The presidential palace said yesterday preparations are in place for the first day of classes in the 10-month school calendar.

In an interview aired over government-run radio station dzRB, Deputy Presidential Spokesperson Abigail Valte said government agencies have taken measures to ensure the safety of students going back to their respective schools today.

"We are prepared for the first day of classes with the Department of Education [DepED] taking the lead. Concerns like traffic and the safety of students have been carefully taken into consideration," she said.

DepEd Secretary Armin Luistro said the government was prepared for the opening of the school year. The country's education system had been known to be deficient in a number of aspects, ranging from the lack of classrooms and inadequate equipment to outdated system of teaching, but Luistro said the department is seriously looking into filling up all essential learning resource gaps.

"These shortages have been perennial problems of the basic education system. While interventions are now in place, we cannot stop from here. We will continue to explore different avenues to make ends meet," he said.

But while the palace and the DepEd is concerned over possible foul-ups at schools during term opening, student groups, parents and educators are looking at the bigger picture, particularly the perennial increases in the cost of education.

The National Union of Students of the Philippines (NUSP), made up of elected student council leaders at the tertiary level, expressed concern over the "alarming drop-out rates as a result of rising tuition and education costs".

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Publication:Gulf News (United Arab Emirates)
Date:Jun 6, 2011
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