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Dumaguete City, PhilippinesTuesday, June 4, 2013
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1.5 million students
troop back to schools

Some 1.5 million students trooped back to public elementary and high schools in Central Visayas yesterday, a government press release said.

The region’s student population was estimated to have increased between two and four percent from last year’s figures, Marcial Degamo, chief of the Department of Education 7 Quality Assurance and Accountability Division, said.

The DepEd 7 said the number of enrollees in the elementary level reached about 1,040,774 pupils. Last year, the agency recorded 1,030,357 pupils in Central Visayas from the first to sixth grades, the press release also said.

Education officials in the region said problems encountered included the lack of classrooms and teachers, even with some 5,000 new teachers hired this school year.

The police said the opening of classes was peaceful.

DepEd Secretary Armin Luistro also reminded the parents and school administrators that basic public education is free and that no collection should be done in kindergarten up to grade 4 anytime during school year 2013-2014; while no collection will be made for June and July for grades 5 to 10, under DepEd Order No. 41, series of 2012.

He added that, nationwide, they expect 20.8 million students in all public schools – 1.78 million of them kindergarten pupils, 13.3 million elementary, and 5.7 million high school students.

Luistro emphasized the department’s efforts to meet zero backlogs in basic learning resources, and said the DepEd has addressed the shortages in textbooks and seats while problems on classrooms, teacher items and water and sanitation facilities are expected to be resolved before 2013 ends, the press release added.*

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