Public Schools Urged to Start Green Spaces

The DepEd is encouraging them to plant more trees, too.

(SPOT.ph) Before the effects of rapid urbanization kicked in, the Metro was filled with green spaces. Today, it's getting harder and harder to come by public parks and gardens. In an attempt to strengthen environmental education among the Filipino youth, the Department of Education is planning to introduce environmental-friendly programs in accordance with one of its core values: Makakalikasan.

PHOTO BY Florentino Floro 
Wikimedia
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According to a report by the Philippine News Agency, the Department of Education (DepEd) is reviviving the School Inside a Garden program, which aims to transform school campuses into gardens of "mostly indigenous and endemic" flowers and trees.

Initially implemented in 1995, the revised School Inside a Garden (SIGA) program had its pilot implementation in 2018. According to a memorandum released by DepEd, student organizations and councils are asked to include planting activities in 442 public elementary and secondary schools nationwide.

The agency also iniated the Search for Campus Heritage Trees, which requires schools to identify heritage trees found within their campuses so that they can be protected against danger, damage, and displacement. Schools are also asked to participate in the annual A Million Tree Challenge by the Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System, with DepEd pledging 500,000 trees for this school year.

The programs, according to DepEd, are aligned with its goals to turn public schools into centers of biodiversity and conservation and to serve as "living laboratories" for learners.

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