Speaker meets with DOE about shortfall - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

Speaker meets with DOE about shortfall

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by Michele Catahay

Guam - The Department of Education met with Committee Chair on Education Speaker Judi Won Pat today to discuss the $10 million shortfall. DOE says it needs those funds before the school year begins. If they don't receive them, schools may no open. DOE Deputy Superintendent of Finance and Administrative Services Taling Taitano says they plan to meet with the Bureau of Budget Management Research to discuss these appropriations.

"Dr. Underwood has requested if we can meet face to face with the director and see how we can provide additional information that will help them reach the same conclusion," she said.

Just recently, Committee Chair on Appropriations Senator Ben Pangelinan expressed disappointment in the Management at DOE. He urged the Department to look into using ARRA funds to cover the shortfall. But Taitano says those funds are needed for improvements and the request is for funds already given to them. Meantime, DOE Superintendent Dr. Nerissa Bretania Underwood also met with regulatory agencies of the Health and Safety Task Force and the Education Suruhanu. The group further discussed the 14 points of the Adequate Public Education Act.

"At this point we're not changing, not proposing to delete any of those points but rather to ensure that we have a definition as to what is a healthy and safe environment for our students," she added.

Bretania Underwood had initially requested to change the section to raise the temperature for classrooms as part of the law. In the meantime, she says nearly all schools have improved during inspections.

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