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DepEd allots P1.8B for future athletes

Neil Alcober

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The Department of Education (DepEd) is proposing a total of P1.8 billion budget for 2021 to fund the education of future national athletes.

President Rodrigo Duterte recently signed Republic Act 11470 or the law creating the National Academy of Sports which aims to develop the athletic skills of students and train them in world-class sports facilities.

“Meron na rin panukala na ‘yung National Academy of Sports Board of Trustees para sa 2021 budget, at ito ay merong total na P1,864,351,000,” DepEd Undersecretary Revsee Escobedo said during the weekly virtual “Handang Isip, Handa Bukas” press conference.

Escobedo said P45 million is allotted for personnel services, P219 million for maintenance and other operating expenses ( MOOE), while a huge chunk of the 2021 budget will be allocated for the construction of classrooms, sports facilities, and equipment.

The main campus of the National Academy of Sports shall rise at the existing New Clark City Sports Complex in Capas, Tarlac. The campus will be equipped with the necessary sports facilities, housing, and other amenities according to current international standards.

“Nakalagay sa batas na dahil ang main campus ay nasa New Clark City Complex and under supervision of the management of Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) kung kaya ‘yung mga pagtatayo ng mga physical structure ay sa kanila po,” Escobedo explained.

The sports academy will be attached to the Department of Education. The Board of Trustees is composed of the Secretary of the Department of Education as chairperson, the chairperson of the Philippine Sports Commission as vice chairperson, and the members of the Board of Trustees are the executive director of the National Academy of Sports, the president of the Philippine Olympic Committee, the chairperson of the Commission on Higher Education, and two representatives from private sector. It will be headed by an executive director to be appointed by the Department of Education.

Signed by President Duterte last 1 July 2020, the National Academy of Sports (NAS) System is mandated to implement quality and enhanced secondary education program, integrated with a special curriculum of sports.

It offers secondary education to natural-born Filipino citizens with potential in sports, design special curriculum for athletic scholars, provide holistic quality education to excel in sports and chosen profession, provide world class facilities, and integrate all sports academies to one governance and management system.

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