LEGAZPI CITY, Philippines – The 2016 Palarong Pambansa in Albay continues to make history as the Department of Education (DepEd), for the first time, will be giving out cash incentives to silver and bronze medalists, on top of the usual incentives for gold medalists.
According to Cesar Abalon, deputy secretary general of the Palarong Pambansa 2016, the silver and bronze medalists this year will get P1,500 and P750, respectively. Gold medalists will get the usual P3,000.
Abalon said the amounts are already included in the budget, while some will be coming from sponsors that have also pledged to give incentives to special awardees.
Similar to the previous Palaro, record-breakers will be receiving P3,000. Members of medal-clinching teams will also have cash incentives each at P2,000 for gold, P1,000 for silver, and P500 for bronze.
The deputy secretary general also said they will consider suggestions to lengthen the number of days for the annual week-long Palarong Pambansa.
There have been calls for a longer schedule after previous editions saw team events extended long into the night.
"We will look into that especially in terms of preparation and budget. It may happen," said Abalon, adding it will be discussed during the evaluation of this year's Palaro.
Shaping young athletes
Meanwhile, DepEd Assistant Secretary Tonisito Umali expressed his appreciation of the opening ceremony held on Sunday, April 10, at the Albay Sports and Tourism Complex.
The opening was historic as for the first time, one of the torchbearers was a person with disability. (WATCH: First PWD torchbearer and Terrence Romeo open Palaro)
Umali also cited how the previous Palaro saw the rise of underperforming teams such as the Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR), which has consistently gone up the ranks from 10th overall in 2013, to 5th in 2014, and to 4th last year.
"Isinasabuhay 'yung disiplina na nakukuha nila [student-athletes] sa paligsahan," Umali added.
(They apply the discipline they learn to their daily lives.) – Rappler.com