We express our support to the suspension order issued by the Department of Education-XI to the schools operated by the Salugpungan Ta Tanu Igkanogon. For their ten years of existence in Compostela Valley, the school’s administration had not consulted the local governments in the province. As governor and former Chair of the Regional Peace and Order Council XI, we also received complaints on the failure of these schools to secure free, prior and informed consents (FPIC’s) from the communities where they operate, as mandated by the Indigenous People’s Rights Act.
DepEd XI gave the Salugpungan management a total of ten days to explain their side and we hope the issues surrounding the suspension will be soon cleared up, following a free and unbiased inquiry.
In the part of the Provincial Government, we exert our fullest efforts to ensure that our IP communities have access to quality education. Through the convergence of different stakeholders and the communities themselves, we successfully completed new classrooms serving our IP children in two of the province’s far-flung communities- in Sitio Puting Bato in Ngan and Sitio Side 4 in Mangayon, Compostela. These we do to fulfill our shared vision of keeping every child in school and that no one will be left behind.