GUAGUA, Pampanga – All 11,463 Grade 12 students from Pampanga public schools, the first batch to graduate under the K to 12 program, have received checks for P2,500 that they can use for graduation expenses, job application or college tuition.
The financial assistance from the provincial government totalled P28.657 million, Vice Gov. Dennis Pineda said.
The Sangguniang Panlalawigan approved the release of the amount from the Capitol’s gender and development fund at the request of Gov. Lilia Pineda, according to the vice governor, the board’s presiding officer.
“We would like male and female youth to have more access to education to be able to increase their opportunities to get out of poverty,” said the vice governor who champions education for the youth.
The checks were given from March 12 to 14 in 79 schools in four districts in the province.
The recipients belong to the first batch of pupils under the K-12 program, which covers 13 years of basic education from Kindergarten to Senior High School, the standard for students and professionals globally.
Including those in private schools and state colleges and universities, Pampanga has a total of 18,982 Grade 12 students, according to Leonardo Zapanta, Department of Education Pampanga division superintendent.
Also on Monday, former Pampanga Rep. Juan Miguel “Mikey” Arroyo visited some schools in the 2nd District, meeting with students and teachers and asking them about their learning and teaching needs.
Vice Governor Pineda also footed the bill for free tickets of Grade 12 students to the Lubao International Balloon and Musical Festival 2018, which will be held on March 23 to 25 at the Pradera Verde.
“Please stay away from illegal drugs. It will ruin your future,” was his message to students.
“Try to finish your studies by availing of educational scholarship from the provincial government,” Vice Governor Pineda said, referring to the program that provides P3,000 to 5,583 students every semester.
The checks were distributed by districts by Board Members Fritzie Dizon, Anthony Joseph Torres, Salvador Dimson Jr., Ferdinand Labung, Rosve Henson, Ananias Canlas Jr., Cherry Manalo, Benjamin Jocson, Arthur Salalila, Nelson Calara, Rolando Balingit and Gerome Tubig.
Chiefs and personnel of the Provincial Treasurer’s Office, Provincial Library and Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office helped in the distribution.