San Juan News
San Juan to open school that ‘never opened’
San Juan Mayor Francis Zamora on Tuesday said the city government would open West Crame Elementary School, the first public school in the city’s most heavily populated village, before the end of July.
The school, which has a four-story building with 20 classrooms and a rooftop gym on a 741-square meter lot in Barangay West Crame, has been left unoccupied since 2015.
The school construction cost P38.8 million, funded through the Priority Development Assistance Fund of Rep. Ronaldo Zamora, the mayor’s father, who had been at odds with former mayor Guia Gomez.
“The school never opened due to politics,” said Mayor Zamora, who defeated the former mayor’s step-granddaughter, former vice mayor Janella Ejercito Estrada, in the May 13 midterm elections.
The Department of Education said the school could not be opened in 2017 due to safety issues considering its location, about 50 meters from a police firing range.
DepEd acting schools division superintendent for San Juan Joel Torrecampo said bullets were reportedly found on school grounds.
The Philippine National Police has since raised the height of the fence around the firing range.
Torrecampo said he wrote then mayor Gomez to ask for the transfer of the school to the local government “for proper determination of usage.”
Later, the city government reportedly wanted to turn the school into a drug rehabilitation center or public housing, Zamora said.
The plan was stalled due to opposition from Rep. Zamora, who pointed out that the school building classification could not be changed because under the General Appropriations Act funding had been allocated specifically for a school.
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