Contributed by Pahad Watamama Abbas
CMS coordinators discuss school issues in the office of Labangan Mayor Eduardo Relacion.
LABANGAN, Zamboanga del Sur– CheckMySchool envisions quality education for Filipino children. To make this dream come true, CMS pushes citizens and communities to actively engage with local and national government in identifying the problems of public schools and how to resolve them. This approach proved to be a game changer in the town of Labangan, Zamboanga del Sur.
The core values of transparency and accountability have attracted Municipal Mayor Eduardo D. Relacion to CMS. He believes that these values could help their municipality address major problems, particularly in the education sector. “I am a resident of this municipality for so long so I make it a point that under my leadership there will be no corruption. Good service is what I can give to my constituents,” Mayor Eddie said.
Since the mayor took office in 2017, he has been consistent with his promise. Indeed, the education sector became one of his priorities. He hired Pahad Watamama Abbas, a CMS coordinator in Zamboanga del Sur, to focus on solving school issues. “Now that I am in the government, I could easily incorporate the issues identified by CMS to all the plans of LGU such as budget allocation,” Abbas shared. CMS has been monitoring 89 public schools in the province.
Pahad Watamama Abbas and Faye Reyes aboard a motor boat bound to Aurora, Zamboanga del Sur where they monitor 40 public schools.
Abbas was assigned in the Local School Board (LSB) where he constantly applies what he learned as a CMS coordinator, specifically in planning and budgeting which now became more participative and consultative in nature.
Through the LSB, 15 locally paid teachers were sent to multigrade school to address shortage of teaching staff. With the help of the Department of Education, they also established two integrated high schools in far flung barangays for the indigenous people of Labangan. Abbas is hopeful that they could reach more schools and solve more issues. Slowly but significantly, Abbas aims to contribute to the CMS’ vision, at least in their province.
If there’s any issue, problem or anything that you think needs improvement in your school, let us know if CMS can help. Go to http://www.checkmyschool.org/cms-can-help/.