Monitoring the Department of Education’s Health-Related Budget for Public Schools

Organization(s)

Ateneo School of Government (ASoG)

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Basic Project Information

The Ateneo School of Government tracked the Department of Education’s funding of school health and nutrition programs and water and sanitation services, and assessed beneficiary perceptions of the impact of these services.

Project Summary

Objectives

Improve school health and nutrition programs (SHNP) and water and sanitation services (WATSAN)

  • Determine the efficiency, effectiveness, transparency, and accountability of the Department of Education (DepEd) in delivering SHNP and WATSAN funding and services
  • Increase community stakeholder involvement in monitoring the delivery of SHNP and WATSAN programs

Summary

The Ateneo School of Government team tracked the funding for SHNP and WATSAN services and assessed beneficiary perceptions of their impact. To begin, the Ateneo team implemented Public Expenditure Tracking Surveys (PETS) in 40 schools to examine the efficiency, effectiveness, transparency, and accountability of the DepEd in delivering services and funding to its intended beneficiaries. Ateneo used focus group discussions, questionnaires, and interviews to gather feedback from school administrators, finance personnel, medical personnel, and clinic teachers. Based on the information they received, the Ateneo team concluded that budget allocations for both WATSAN and SHNP services were insufficient, and furthermore that there was confusion and disagreement between regional and local governments regarding budget allotments. To complement the PETS’s findings, Ateneo led Citizen Report Cards (CRCs) in the same school divisions to gather information on students’ and teachers’ awareness of SHNP and WATSAN services, as well as their usage, and satisfaction with those services. The study revealed school toilet safety and privacy problems, as well insufficient nutritious food options in school canteens. The research team conducted multi-stakeholder social audits to validate PETS and CRC findings. Teachers, parents, students, and school heads prioritized issues and concerns, which were later presented to the DepEd regional offices. Finally, using the findings from all three tools, the Ateneo research team met with the DepEd Central office to get their feedback on the study findings and push for possible policy reform. ASoG plans to continue to raise awareness on policy issues related to health in the education sector in order to achieve their goal of raising the DepEd budget for health-related programs in schools.

Use of Information Communication Technology

None

Scale

PETS: 40 schools

CRC: 246 teacher and 1,945 students surveyed across 40 schools

Social Audit: 2 schools in Antipolo City

Target Population

Public primary school children
Results

Results Methodology

Self-reported results

Indicators Used

Not applicable

Reported Results

  • SHNP and WATSAN issues resolved in 38 out of 40 target schools
  • Increased community engagement and empowerment
  • Increased community understanding of local government policies and procedures
  • Improved capacity of ASoG team members to lead social accountability approaches
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