June 18, 2012
Cayetano seeks more funds for education of special children
Senate minority leader Alan Peter Cayetano filed a bill seeking more government financial assistance for the education of children with special needs.
Senate bill 3226, titled 'Children with Special Needs Education Fund Act of 2012' seeks to encourage synergy between local government and Department of Education (DepEd) to support special education centers and schools. Specifically, it directs the allocation of ten percent (10%) of the Special Education Fund for special education centers or schools.
Additionally, an increased fund allocation from the LGUs' Special Education Funds to support programs of the Department of Education for special children will be matched by DepEd.
"It is a state obligation to provide special nurturing for the education of children with special needs as they are equally entitled to the same free basic education guaranteed by the Constitution to children under regular school systems," said Cayetano.
He said that at least 10 to 13 per cent of the country's children population suffer from physical, mental, emotional, behavioral disabilities and yet there are only 155 special education centers with 1,176 teachers in the country effectively reaching a mere 3 per cent or 168,858 students with special needs.
Cayetano is also asking education officials from national and local government units, as well as corporations doing corporate social responsibility programs, to allot more funds for Special Education for children with special needs.
"Ten to thirteen percent of the population will surely impact what kind of tomorrow we will have. These children are in difficulty as it is and to handicap them further by not providing the kind of education they need will not only harm these children and their families but will also harm us as a community and as a nation," he added.
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