Sectoral Performance Audit Report on the
The right of Filipino citizens to quality education at all levels is guaranteed under the 1987 Philippine Constitution. It is provided therein that the state shall take appropriate steps to make education accessible to all and to establish and maintain a system of free public education in the elementary and high school levels.
This mandate carries with it the responsibility of providing the different components of education such as school buildings, textbooks, armchairs, and teachers. For SY 2002-2003, there were 16,435,529 students in the elementary and secondary education enrolled in 36,301 and 5,394 elementary and secondary schools, respectively, nationwide.
In the Historical Inventory of classrooms prepared by the Department of Education (DepEd), the total classroom shortage for SY 2001-2002 for elementary and secondary education were reflected to be 8,040 and 27,946, respectively, or a total of 35,986 and is projected to increase to 44,716 by SY 2003-2004.
The shortage of classrooms is a long standing issue which is being raised every enrolment period. To ensure that substantial number of classrooms are built, the government is appropriating P2.0 Billion annually for the School Building Program (SBP). For this purpose, the government had devised an allocation system that is perceived to address equitable and fair allocation of resources. The allocation as defined under Section 4 of R.A. No. 7880, otherwise known as the "Fair and Equitable Access to Education Act", is shown below:
Under the Act, 90% of the Annual Appropriation will be released to the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) for the implementation of the program while the 10% will be administered by the DepEd.
The budgets for CYs 2002 and 2003 were expected to produce 6,154 and 5,330 classrooms, respectively, for elementary and secondary schools considering an average cost of P325,000/classroom in CY 2002 and P375,000/classroom in CY 2003. These units were distributed to the 210 Legislative Districts in accordance with the above RA 7880 allocations as follows:
These allocations are not sufficient to eliminate the classroom shortage of both elementary and secondary schools of 35,986 for SY 2001-2002. The National Government is, however, not alone in this endeavor. The Local Government Units (LGUs) and a number of government and private entities are also constructing school buildings to help the National Government.
The audit was conducted to determine whether or not the implementation of the school building program has been effectively and economically managed giving consideration to:
AUDIT SCOPE AND METHODOLOGY
The audit focused on the implementation of the school building program for elementary education covering allocation for SY 2002-2003. The agencies included in the audit are the DepEd and DPWH with ocular inspection on selected Division/District Offices within the National Capital Region (NCR) and Regional Offices Nos. VI and X, the Provincial Government of Bukidnon and the City Government of Iloilo.
The performance of the DepEd was assessed using the following criteria:
To meet the audit objective, the team performed the following procedures:
The audit was conducted from July 7, 2003 to February 23, 2004 in compliance with COA MS/TS Office Order No. 2003-009 dated June 24, 2003 and TS Office Order No. 2003-068 dated October 17, 2003.
Overall, the audit concluded that the implementation of the school building program was not effectively and economically managed. The implementation was affected by deficiencies in the process of implementation from allocation of resources to monitoring of contractor’s performance as discussed below:
Moreover, considering the limited government resources, the adoption of multi-storey buildings even in schools sites with ample space which proved to be costly compared with one-storey building is uneconomic. The cost allocated per classroom for this type of building is more than twice the cost of a one-storey classroom.
These lapses hinder the achievement of the government’s objective of providing adequate classrooms on time for each school thereby affecting the quality of education offered to students.
Considering the importance of school buildings in the delivery of quality education, the team recommended measures to address these concerns for consideration by the DepEd and other implementing agencies.
MANAGEMENT’S REACTION TO AUDIT OBSERVATIONS
The results of the audit were forwarded for comments to the Honorable Secretaries of DepEd and DPWH, the Governor of the Province of Bukidnon and the Mayor of Iloilo City under our letters all dated June 11, 2004. In their comments, DepEd Undersecretary Ramon C. Bacani, Governor Jose Ma. R. Zubiri, Jr. of Bukidnon, Mayor Jerry P. Treñas of Iloilo City and DPWH Undersecretary Antonio A. Inocentes acknowledged the existence of the problem and provided explanations on the circumstances surrounding these issues and the actions taken by their respective Offices relative thereto.
In general, they expressed concurrence on the team’s proposed recommendations. DPWH even recommended additional measures to the DepEd to address these issues.