Press Release
June 13, 2006


Senator Edgardo J. Angara today called on the Senate Committee on Education to conduct an investigation into the anomaly in the implementation of the Department of Educations Food for School Program (FSP).

This program was intended to rescue poor families from hunger and malnutrition. It is a food subsidy package for young learners who are supposed to belong to poor families, Angara said, but the laudable objectives of the program will be defeated if its implementation does not ensure the right amount of provision to the proper recipient schoolchildren.

The FSP was supposed to provide a daily ration of one kilo of rice to pre-elementary and Grade 1 students for 90 days through a budget totaling 1.6 billion pesos. The number of beneficiaries since April of this year was 371,617.

However, questions were raised on the departments rice feeding program during the recently concluded budget deliberation in the Senate, since only 25 kilos of rice, as opposed to the required 90 kilos covered by the 90-day feeding period, were actually distributed. Only to Grade 1 pupils in pilot schools in Metro Manila benefited from the program.

Malnutrition affects a huge percentage of Filipino children, making them susceptible to disease and infection. Based on the 2003 National Nutrition Survey, 2.9 million primary school-age children were underweight, while 3.41 million were growth-stunted. Therefore, programs that seek to improve the nutrition of our school children must be reviewed and analyzed to ensure that they meet standards of consistency, effectiveness and efficiency, Angara urged.

Similarly, Angara has been undertaking a School Feeding Program (SFP) to address the malnutrition problem among school-age children through the delivery of basic food products.

Through the Angara SFP, provisions of milk, noodles and egg are given to pupils from Grade 1 to 3 on a 120-day feeding cycle. Angara stressed that these children, aged 7-9, are in their most important mental and physical development stage.

To date, over 24,000 pupils from the NCR and provincial schools in Abra, Aurora, Benguet, Ilocos Norte and Iloilo have benefited from the Angara SFP program. The program saw great improvements in attendance, learning capabilities, academic performance, overall nutritional status, and the reduction of drop-out rates among beneficiaries.

News Latest News Feed