‘Pisay’ campus in Region 12 to open

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews/31 May) — The Philippine Science High School (PSHS) Region 12 or Soccsksargen campus in nearby Koronadal City will finally open its doors this school year to an initial 90 scholars from various parts of the region.

Dr. Zenaida Hadji Raof-Laidan, Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Region 12 director, said Friday the construction and development of the initial classroom buildings and facilities at the new PSHS regional campus in Barangay Paraiso in Koronadal City are now almost complete and will be ready for the scheduled opening of classes on June 10.

She said the first batch of scholars comprise the 46 principal qualifiers and the 44 other alternate qualifiers who hurdled the national competitive examination conducted by the PSHS system in September last year.

Laidan said the scholars came from the different parts of Region 12, which comprises the provinces of South Cotabato, Sultan Kudarat, Sarangani, North Cotabato and the cities of General Santos, Koronadal, Tacurong, Kidapawan and Cotabato.

PSHS held the enrollment last May 21 and 22 at the South Cotabato Provincial Planning and Development Office for the new campus’ first year class or Grade 7 in the K to 12 system, she said.

“The preparations are so far all set and the campus is now ready to hold its first classes,” Laidan said in a statement.

The official said the phased development of the campus will continue and the DOST has already allocated the required funds for it.

The provincial government of South Cotabato spent some P7.3 million for the acquisition of the site for the PSHS regional campus, which was estimated to cost around P200 million when fully completed.

The 4.5-hectare lot, which is located near the site of the state-of-the-art Philippine National Halal Laboratory and Science Center of DOST-12, was the provincial government’s counterpart to the project based on an agreement with the DOST.

Dr. Josette Biyo, PSHS system director, earlier said the new regional campus will mainly feature modern academic buildings, complete research and laboratory facilities as well as dormitories or housing facilities.

She said they will also establish alternative learning centers within the campus to cater to the needs of “gifted students” from the area.

Citing the project’s development plan, Biyo said the construction of the academic buildings and other campus facilities will be done in several phases and on progressive basis.

PSHS-Soccsksargen Region campus is the country’s 12th and the third in Mindanao.

The PSHS, which operates as an attached agency of the DOST, is a specialized public high school system that focuses on high quality science-based education and training.

The PSHS system, which was initially patterned after the Bronx High School of Science in New York City, was established by the government “for the purpose of giving an education highly enriched in science and mathematics to exceptionally gifted Filipino children,” its website said. (Allen V. Estabillo/MindaNews)