PED­ALS AND PAD­DLES PROJECT

Sun.Star Pampanga - - PERSPECTIVE! -

MARITA S. MON­TEMAYOR

Have you heard of the Depart­ment of Ed­u­ca­tion’s Ped­als and Pad­dles Project? It aims to pro­vide an eas­ier and faster way to go to school for chil­dren who live in ar­eas with­out other means of trans­porta­tion.

The School Prin­ci­pals or School Head to­gether with the Mu­nic­i­pal­ity will take the lead in iden­ti­fy­ing the stu­dent- re­cip­i­ent of the said project, fol­low­ing cer­tain guide­lines.

Boats will be given to com­mu­ni­ties with school­child­ren that need to wade through bod­ies of wa­ter to go to school.

Each boat will be turned over to a fam­ily within the community that agrees to ac­cept the boat and to abide by the poli­cies and rules of the project. Aside from fer­ry­ing the school­child­ren to a cer­tain point go­ing to their re­spec­tive schools, re­cip­i­ent fam­i­lies will have to en­sure that there are spe­cific in­di­vid­u­als who will take re­spon­si­bil­ity over the boat’s use, main­te­nance, and up­keep; and max­i­mize the boat’s po­ten­tial as this can also be used for the fam­ily’s liveli­hood dur­ing off-school hours or off-school days.

Bi­cy­cles, mean­while, will be given to high school stu­dents who have to walk sev­eral kilo­me­ters to go to school. The pri­or­ity is high school stu­dents be­cause they are more ca­pa­ble of rid­ing bikes com­pared to younger school­child­ren.

Each bike will be given to stu­dents as “bike loan” while giv­ing par­tial own­er­ship to schools to look over the use of the bikes and en­sure proper main­te­nance and up­keep of bikes.

A school, in order to be a ben­e­fi­ciary, must agree and com­mit to pro­vide a fa­cil­ity that can be used to store the bikes dur­ing off-school hours and/or days, en­sure reg­u­lar and con­tin­u­ous up­keep of bikes, ap­point a fo­cal per­son who can su­per­vise an in­ven­tory con­trol in en­sur­ing ef­fi­cient use of bikes, and a sup­port group that can mon­i­tor stu­dent’s per­for­mance and sus­tain­abil­ity of the project.

A stu­dent who needs to walk at least three (3) kilo­me­ters in go­ing to school and lives at low-in­come thresh­old (Php 6,000.00 and be­low for a fam­ily of 5) will be cho­sen as ben­e­fi­ciary.

— oOo—

The au­thor is Sec­ondary School Teacher III at Dios­dado Ma­ca­pa­gal Me­mo­rial High School, Florid­ablanca, Pam­panga

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