The Philippines Department of Education (DepEd) has been criticized for its handling of the education docket resulting in students failing to get required resources in 2019.
State auditors indicated that, long before coronavirus posed a problem in the country, the department was already mismanaging education. However, the problem could not be masked for long after the coronavirus hit the country and showcased how inefficient education was being run.
Schools and students across the country have been coping with a lack of textbooks, instructional materials, computers and other required materials that are mostly used in maths and science classes.
The state auditors indicated that all these could have been avoided if the department had been able to keep up with the process involved in filing for shortages. He noted that, although billions of taxpayers’ money had already been given to the department, the money was not allocated to its intended purpose.
The Commission on Audit (COA) indicated that for textbooks alone, DepEd failed to spend P1.03 billion allocated for textbooks and instructional materials.
The COA noted that although the DepEd blamed the extensive and meticulous procurement requirements for their delay in getting the required materials for students, they indicated that the procurement started in October 2019 but was supposed to have started as early as April of the same year. This meant that the DepEd had failed students and schools in delivering quality educaiton.
On the DepEd computerization program, COA noted that the department’s performance had fallen short of what was expected. They indicated that the department was able to only deliver 59 percent of its target of 14,342 schools with information and communication technology (ICT) packages between 2015 and 2019.
However, the state auditors were quick to point out that typhoons and bad weather may have caused some of these delays. However, they indicated that even accounting for such uncontrollable events, the department still run behind its schedule.
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