“This will be a smart campus,” so said Science Secretary Mario Montejo on his plans for the Philippine Science High School - Soccsksargen campus during its groundbreaking ceremony at Brgy. Paraiso, Koronadal City on June 22, 2012. The campus is latest PSHS campus to be constructed.
“We’ll make this new campus really unique, not only in curriculum but also in physical structure and design of the buildings and architecture. This campus will stand out,” he added.
The PSHS system, also endearingly called “Pisay,” is under the administration of the Department of Science and Technology. Pisay campuses prepare students for science careers, thus designing their curriculum with science and mathematics in focus but balanced with humanities and the arts.
The newest PSHS will rise on a five-hectare land worth P7.3 million donated by the South Cotabato province. The campus will comprise academic buildings, research and laboratory facilities, dormitory, and other facilities to complete the learning experience of students.
“Hindi po kayo manghihinayang sa budget na ibibigay nyo,” Dr. Josette Biyo, executive director of the PSHS system, said. “We promise to give your kids the best education.”
Earlier, Sec. Montejo reported that PSHS students from the Western Visayas campus bagged the grand champion title in the ASEAN+3 Junior Science Odyssey held June 10-17, 2012 in Brunei Darusallam. Meanwhile, while another set of PSHS students from the PSHS-Central Luzon (Clark) students won four silver and one bronze medals in the same tilt, bringing a total of 12 medals for the Philippine team.
“This just proves that PSHS students are world class,” said Sec. Montejo.
The new campus received full support from various leaders to jumpstart its construction in time for next school year. Gov. Arthur Pingoy Jr allocated P5 million to fund the initial construction of the campus’s facilities, while YACAP Partylist Carol Jayne Lopez donated P5 million which Special Allotment Release Order (SARO) she handed to Gov. Pingoy during the turn-over ceremony.
In addition, Lopez also allocated an additional P1 million as a counterpart to Gov. Pingoy’s additional P1 million budget for constructing the road going to the campus.
Koronadal City Mayor Peter Miguel allocated P5 million while, Agham partylist Rep. Angelo Palmones, who pledged P2 million also committed an additional 1 million for road construction from his Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF).
Pingoy revealed that the provincial government has already prepared the campus’ initial program of work, to be approved by Sec. Montejo and Dr. Biyo. Pingoy hopes that the campus will be ready by 2013.
Meanwhile, the campus is now accepting applications for school year 2013-2014 up to July 6. DOST-12 Director Zenaida Laidan invites students who are in the top 10 percent of the graduating class and those with special aptitude in science and mathematics to take the PSHS National Competitive Examination on Sept. 29, 2012. (Framelia V. Anonas, S&T Media Service)