Soon, elementary school students from all public schools in the country will be able to enter national landmarks, shrines, public museums and historical sites for free. This is the main provision of House Bill Number 5503 which was authored by Bacolod Rep. Evelio “Bing” Leonardia. According to Leonardia’s office, the bill was already approved in the final reading at the House of Representatives.
Further provisions of the bill state that determining the capacity and availability of these landmarks and historical sites will be the responsibility of the National Historical Commission of the Philippines or National Museum. Likewise, the Department of Education will also coordinate with them.
The bill was also co-authored by the ff: Representatives:
- Carlo Lopez (Manila, 2nd District)
- Silvestre Bello III (Party List – 1 BAP)
- Sherwin Gatchalian (Valenzuela City, 1st District)
- Arturo Robes (San Jose Del Monte City, Lone District)
- Evelina Escudero (Sorsogon, 1st District)
- Kimi Cojuangco (Pangasinan, 5th District)
- Sol Aragones (Laguna, 3rd District)
- Leah Paquiz (Party List – ANG NARS)
- Eulogio Magsaysay (Party List – AVE)
- Julieta Cortuna (Party List – A TEACHER)
- Mariano Piamonte Jr. (Party List – A TEACHER)
Based on the SY 2013-2014 data of the Philippine Statistics Authority-National Statistical Coordination Board, there are over 15 million public school students in the elementary level. According to Bacolod Rep. Leonardia, the bill will help improve historical and cultural awareness of public school students by granting them free access to key resources like shrines, museums, landmarks and the like.
Bacolod Rep Leonardia
Hon. Leonardia, Evelio “Bing” R. is serving his first term as the Representative of the Lone District of Bacolod City. He served as a Councilor and Vice-Mayor for the city before becoming the Mayor in 1995, 2004, 2007 and 2010. He ran for Congress last 2013 and won.