The Senate Committee on Finance has accepted Senator Win Gatchalian’s proposal to increase the budget for the implementation of the Functional Literacy, Education, and Mass Media Survey (FLEMMS). The FLEMMS is a nationwide household-based survey that gathers information on basic and functional literacy rates, and educational skills qualifications.
Under the Senate finance panel’s committee report on the proposed 2024 national budget, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) will receive P208.97 million for the implementation of the FLEMMS. This is 254.3% higher than the P58.9 million under the National Expenditure Program (NEP) and the General Appropriations Bill (House Bill No. 8980).
Gatchalian originally proposed an additional P160 million for the implementation of the FLEMMS next year. During the hearing on the proposed budget of the PSA, Gatchalian raised the possibility of making the data more granular by conducting the survey all the way to the city level.
“This will help the Second Congressional Commission on Education (EDCOM II) to identify areas where we have high illiteracy rates, so we can launch programs that will improve education outcomes in those places,” said Gatchalian, Chairperson of the Senate Committee on Basic Education.
“I’m sure that the data and information collected through the FLEMMS will be put to good use by the EDCOM,” Gatchalian added.
Gatchalian also proposed conducting the FLEMMS more regularly. The latest FLEMMS survey was conducted in 2019, the sixth in the series that started in 1989. During the hearing on the proposed PSA budget, National Statistician Dr. Dennis Mapa said that the PSA board will explore the possibility of conducting the FLEMMS more regularly. Dr. Mapa added that conducting the FLEMMS every three years could be a reasonable option.