The National Academy of Sports (NAS) will receive adequate funding support under the recently approved P5.268 trillion 2023 budget to ensure that its operations are not hampered, Senator Win Gatchalian said.
The national budget for next year carried Gatchalian’s proposals to increase funds for NAS, especially for its Sports-Integrated Secondary Education Program. Gatchalian proposed to augment the program’s proposed budget of P88,113,000 by P57,481,000 for a total of P145,594,000.
The budget for the Sports-Integrated Secondary Education Program covers the monthly stipends for incoming Grade 7 students, provision of nutritious meals, and students’ participation in competitions, among others. It also covers benchmarking that will enhance road mapping and help make NAS become a leader in sports development. The program earlier faced a looming P104-million-cut, which Gatchalian said could affect the academy’s efforts to attract students, especially from the countryside.
“Tinitiyak natin na matutupad natin ang ating pangako noong isabatas ang paglikha sa NAS — ang mabigyan ng kaukulang suporta ang ating mga atleta at pagtibayin ang ating suporta sa sports dito sa ating bansa,” said Gatchalian, co-author and sponsor of Republic Act No. 11470, which created the NAS System.
Under the law, the NAS System is mandated to implement a quality and enhanced secondary education program, integrated with a special curriculum on sports. It will offer full scholarships to natural-born Filipino citizens with considerable potential in sports. The NAS curriculum seeks to help student-athletes excel in their respective sports or pursue their chosen careers.
The law also seeks the establishment of nationally funded regional high schools for sports to boost the development of young athletes in other parts of the country.