The Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) said Thursday it is looking at funding the studies of over 200,000 scholars by the end of 2020.
The acceptance of more scholars would allow TESDA to use some P3.6 billion unspent funds from its 2019 budget, its chief Isidro Lapeña told senators during a budget hearing.
“Our catch-up plan is, by the end of 2020, we will be able to utilize… by mobilizing a total of 215,387 scholars. By the end of December 2020, we will have a 100-percent enrollment for this,” Lapeña told senators.
The TESDA chief explained that the agency could fully utilize its budget by the end of the year despite difficulties in the education system due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“There is a slowdown in the utilization of funds because of the COVID pandemic. But we are confident that we can use these funds para sa ating mga kababayan,” he said.
“Ang daming nangangailangan ng training (Many are in need of training),” he added.
Sen. Nancy Binay urged TESDA to be “realistic” in its plan of funding over 200,000 more scholars with barely three months left in the year.
“Just being realistic, kasi nga, alam natin hanggang ngayon, naka-lockdown pa rin tayo at mahirap, walang face-to-face classes,” she said.
(Just being realistic because we know that until now, we’re still on lockdown and it’s difficult because there are no face-to-face classes.)
Lapeña said there are over 12,000 individuals currently enrolled in TESDA.
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