LAOAG CITY, July 3 — Thousands of elementary, high school, and college students are sent to school for free in Ilocos Norte to achieve the ‘free education for all’ goal of the Provincial Government.
The ‘Iskolar ni Manang Imee’ is an initiative of Gov. Imee Marcos tha tawards cash grants to poor but deserving students.
Indigent elementary students receive a one-time P250 cash incentive while high school students receive P450 for their miscellaneous expenses. College students receive a P2,250 monthly stipend to cover lodging, and transportation and food expenses. Their tuition fee is separately paid for by the provincial government.
This school year, there are 11,505 elementary students and 4,037 high school under the program.
In college, 300 scholars attend various courses at the Mariano Marcos State University. The priority courses include business administration, computer engineering, biology, secondary education (major in Physical Science and Biological Science), marine biology, computer science, and hospitality management.
On top of the financial assistance, the provincial government is also shouldering the electric bills of so-called Millennium Development Goal (MDG)schools under the “Iskolar ni Manang Imee, INEC Bill mo, Sagot Ko” program.
MDG schools or indigent schools are identified under the National Housing Targeting System of the Department of Social Welfare and Development. There are 346 indigent elementary schools and 48 indigent secondary schools in the province.
Marcos believes that the program will help attain the free education for all, one of the MDGs of the province, as well as contribute to manpower development. (ANL/CPC-PIA 1, Ilocos Norte)