MANILA, PHILIPPINES. The Department of Education (DepEd) has maintained that the 2015 budget is not discretionary and shall be used only for the intended purposes and actual needs, according to the statement in the ministry's website.
Recently, former Senator Panfilo Lacson named DepEd as one of the agencies with the highest lumpsum or discretionary budgets under the General Appropriations Act of 2015.
In the statement, DepEd said that while the honorable senator did not enumerate the details of the PhP80.7 billion budget allocated for DepEd,he may have referred to aggregate amounts that are not discretionary in nature but are intended for specific expenditures.
A total amount of PhP36.9 billion of the budget will go to the construction of classrooms for the Senior High School (SHS) program, school repairs and other infrastracture needs, the DepEd said.
It added that the budget for salaries of new teachers to be hired and other personnel requirements of the Department will have an allocation of PhP25.6 billion while the conduct of a school-based feeding program for undernourished children will have PhP2.4 billion.
Training of teachers on the enhanced K to 12 curriculum is allocated PhP2.0 billion budget, the DepEd added.
"These budgets have been derived based on actual need and plans prepared by schools and DepEd's field offices, especially in relation to the implementation of the SHS program. In the case of the SHS construction budget, the schools have already been identifies and construction programs for these schools have been defined. The list of the SHS schools with programmed classroom construction is available on the DepEd website," the DepEd said.