Angara eyes solar panels for public schools in far-flung areas

By on April 11, 2015

Sen. Sonny Angara with students (screengrab from @sonnyangara on Instagram)
Sen. Sonny Angara with students (screengrab from @sonnyangara on Instagram)

MANILA — Senator Juan Edgardo ‘Sonny’ Angara has filed a bill mandating the government to install solar panels in public elementary and high school buildings in the country’s far-flung areas.

Under his Senate Bill No. 2597, Angara proposed that the Department of Education (DepEd), in cooperation with the Department of Energy and the Department of Science and Technology, should ensure that solar panels with a capacity of at least 200 watts will be installed to public school buildings where electrical line installation is not available.

”There are still public schools in remote areas of the country that are without electricity. We still have public school students who are not yet enjoying the convenience and benefits of having bright-lit classrooms and computers as tools for learning,” Angara said.

Angara said the government must address the gap in promoting better learning and comprehension skills of the schoolchildren especially in far-flung areas.

The proposed bill of Angara is a counterpart of House Bill No. 4715 filed by A Teacher partylist representative Julieta Cortuna at the House of Representatives.

Angara said while the National Electrification Administration (NEA) has an ongoing electrification program which will eventually include all public classrooms around the country, the solar power will serve as either the primary or alternative power source for the benefitted public classrooms.

“When electricity is not available, support technology for a quality education could not be delivered,” said Angara, son of former Senator Edgardo Angara who sponsored the passage of the K to 12 law in the Senate.

”Our bill aims to ensure that all schools nationwide will have power to energize basic teaching tools such as computers, printers and other laboratory equipment enabling them to deliver the same degree of quality teaching as other schools with electricity,” the young Angara added.