Brigada Eskwela, an activity undertaken in public schools every third week of May or two weeks before classes begin, is a nationwide voluntary effort which started in 2003. Parents, teachers and community gathered together to do clean up and repairs to prepare the rooms for the beginning of the new school year. It is also participated by individual, private organizations, business sectors, local and national government agencies which together share their efforts, time and resources.

In DepEd  Ifugao Division, Brigada Eskwela kicked off at  Nunhabatan Elementary School, Lamut,Ifugao. According to Assistant Schools Division Superintendent (ASDS) Felipe L. Ballitoc, this school was selected based on its needs and the extent of repair to be done.

So on May 19,2014, the new Schools Division Superintendent ,Madam Sally B.Ullalim,  and  ASDS Felipe L. Ballitoc with the  promotional staff and personnel headed for Lamut  particularly at Nunhabatan Elementary School, a sitio of   Barangay Hapid to grace the Kick-Off Program prepared by the Cluster Head, Principal Elizabeth Marquez of Payawan Elementary School together with the teaching staff of Nunhabatan Elemetary School and the community.

In  show of full support to the Department of Education (DepEd) in preparation for the opening of classes for the school year 2014-2015 and the annual observance of the Maintenance Week known as “ Brigada Eskwela,” the local  government unit of Lamut  headed by  Hon. Mariano Buyagawan Jr., who warmly  welcomed  everybody during the opening program  came   with  the Municipal Council,personnel of the Lamut PNP , the Army Reservist and private citizens took part  in mobilizing  their resources, performed  specific tasks that was prepared beforehand like  roof  and wall painting, construction of comfort rooms, grass cutting in front and at the back of their school buildings, and minor repair of school desks and tables.

The Provincial Government headed by Hon. Denis B. Habawel was represented by Attorney Evelyn S. Dunuan, Provincial Administrator. She gave an inspiring message about the importance of education in one’s life and the role of parents to assist their children  in their   studies  which includes attending meetings in school and joining this Brigada Eskwela.

Mr.Francis Tenenan,Sr.former mayor of Lamut  and representing  Congressman Teodora Baguilat Jr.was also in attendance before proceeding to Asipulo to sponsor a wedding. He told the audience to participate actively and be involved in this activity as this is one sure way of helping the school maintain a safe  environment  conducive for learning.

Meanwhile, Schools Division Superintendent Sally Ullaim was introduced to the audience being her first appearance  in this school  talked  about  this year’s Brigada Eskwela theme “Making Schools Safer” and she  pointed out that Brigada Eskwela encourages the public to share their time, strength and resources in kind.

“The school is an institution which is responsible in molding the learners into a responsible individual in the society. This is where one is crafted into a better person, who will be an emblem of the kind of learning center where be was raised. The multifarious concern of school demands working with others to accomplish designed tasks and objectives. These would need dedicated school personnel, cooperative parents, accountable community and innovative learners” Hon. Brenda Sawad stressed out.

She took this opportunity to monitor the implementation of Brigada Eskwela in the clustered schools of  Alupapan, Pugol and Salamague accompanied by Mayor Mariano Buyagawon Jr and Councilors Dolores Mateo and  Brenda Sawad,incharge of Education and Health respectively and  with some  school heads  of Lamut District.

SDS Ullalim  was so much impressed with the deep involvement of the LGUs particularly the Mayor and the  Municipal Councilors as partners in furthering the goals and programs of  DepEd.

“Our heartfelt thanks to the DepEd Family from the Division Office and Lamut District, the PLGUs,the MLGUs  and to all volunteers, parents,barangay official and the PTA officers and members of this place  for coming today in this school and volunteer  help prepare it for the opening of classes come June 2” was the message of Public Schools District Supervisor, Dr.  Corazon Fontanilla.

# Aurelia T.Ballitoc