TANAUAN, Leyte – The Department of Education (DepEd) will open a formal school inside the Regional Rehabilitation Center for Youth (RRCY) here this August.
In a statement on Wednesday, Leyte schools division superintendent Manuel Albaño said DepEd, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DWSD), and the local government of Tanauan, have signed a memorandum of agreement on July 23 for the opening of formal classes from Grade 7 to 12 inside the rehabilitation facility.
“This initiative is the first in the country. There is magic in new beginnings and we can do magic with people around offering support. These children might be incarcerated but their minds are free,” he added.
The DSWD, which manages and maintains the facility, converted its old building inside the complex into classrooms that can accommodate the 42 children in conflict with the law (CICLs) under its care.
The local government of Tanauan said it will be providing the children with their school uniforms.
“This would make them feel normalcy, especially that they would be in uniforms. I have seen their transformation. They may be viewed as perpetrators, but they too are victims for one reason or another,” DSWD Eastern Visayas Director Marie Angela Gopalan said in a statement.
RRCY is a residential facility that provides intensive treatment for the rehabilitation of male CICLs whose sentences have been suspended.
It serves as a nurturing out-of-home placement for CICLs to enhance their psychological, emotional, and psychosocial well-being.
The DSWD said there are 15 RRCYs across the country.
Meanwhile, DepEd-Leyte also launched a senior high school program inside the Leyte Regional Prison in Abuyog town, the country’s first formal school inside a penal colony.
The DepEd is also pushing for the opening of a community college in the regional prison, in partnership with other institutions, including the Abuyog Community College and the Leyte Normal University. (PNA)