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School feeding bill on the verge of being passed — Nograles

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House committee on appropriations chairman Karlo Nograles expressed elation that the bill on the institutionalization of a National School Feeding Program (NSFP) is one step closer to being enacted.

By an 18-0 vote, the Senate passed on third and final reading last week Senate Bill No. 1279 or the proposed “National School Feeding Program Act,” under which young students from around the country will be guaranteed one hot meal per day when they attend government-run schools.

Nograles noted that it had taken a year since the House appropriations panel approved the funding provision of the House of Representatives version of the NSFP Act. The Davao solon is one of the main authors of the measure, which was eventually designated as House Bill No. 5269.

“The committee acted on it with dispatch on February 22, 2017. We believe that a properly nourished child is one who can absorb teachers’ lessons better and has more energy to participate in school activities. The enactment of this measure is definitely worth pursuing,” Nograles said.

The House passed its version of the bill on third and final reading on May 2, 2017, after which it was promptly transmitted to the Senate.

Nograles said the next step involves the convening of the bicameral conference committee to see if there are provisions that need to be improved or harmonized between the two versions of the measure.

The final version of the proposed act shall then be sent to Malacañang for President Rodrigo Duterte’s signature.

“This will go a long way in ensuring that Filipino children would become healthier and more capable pupils. Children who come to school hungry by their hardworking yet hard luck parents will at least go home with a full belly,” Nograles said.