DepEd says processing funds for repair of typhoon-hit schools

Jaehwa Bernardo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Nov 08 2020 01:35 PM | Updated as of Nov 09 2020 01:20 AM

Teachers clear a room of debris from the destroyed ceiling of the Sibacungan Elementary School in Bato, Catanduanes on November 6, 2020. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

MANILA — The disaster office under the Department of Education said the agency has started to process funding for the repairs of schools damaged by super typhoon Rolly.

"We have started to process funds for immediate clean-up and minor repair for affected schools, to be followed with the distribution of hygiene and teachers' and learners' kits," Ronilda Co, head of DepEd's disaster risk reduction and management service (DRRMS), said in a meeting with non-government organizations and partners earlier this week.

"Our engineers and DRRM coordinators have begun conducting the detailed assessment of infrastructure and non-infrastructure damages to determine the funding requirement for the comprehensive rehabilitation and recovery of affected schools, learners, and personnel," she added.

The department earlier reported that 226 schools, mostly from the Bicol region, incurred damages amounting to P489.5 million after Rolly, the world's strongest storm this year, battered parts of southern Luzon last November 1.

Education Secretary Leonor Briones has said the DepEd requested funds from the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council for the repair of school buildings damaged by Rolly, a super typhoon at its peak.

Strengthen mental health services

Co bared the department's response efforts in the meeting, which mainly tackled how the DepEd and its partners could strengthen mental health and psychological support services (MHPSS) for personnel, learners and parents.

In a statement, the DepEd said it would continue to broadcast MHPSS materials every weekend, resume online MHPSS activities, and conduct an MHPSS concert.

Some DepEd personnel, students and parents have admitted of feeling stressed, burned out or anxious with the education system's pivot to distance learning after in-person classes were banned due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

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