Senator and Senate Sports Committee Chair Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go said that President Rodrigo Duterte signed into law the Republic Act 11470, which aimed to establish the National Academy of Sports in Davao City, June 9.
“I firmly believe that with this law, we will be able to catch up with the rest of the world in terms of sports development,” Go, one of the principal authors, said.
According to Go, the NAS would allow student-athletes to enjoy a level of training which is at par with the best in the world and, at the same time, be given quality education.
“It is about time that we establish a learning institution focused on sports. Ngayon na magkakaroon na ng National Academy of Sports, sabay nang mabibigyan ang mga kabataang atleta ng pagkakataon na mag-training at makapag-aral sa isang world-class na pasilidad at eskwelahan,” Go said.
“As the Chairman of the Committee on Sports, I would like to express my gratitude to my fellow legislators for coming together in support of this measure for the benefit of our youth and for the benefit of Philippine sports,” he added.
Go also thanked Duterte for approving the said measure, which he told waited for 10 years to become a law.
“I also would like to thank the Philippines Sports Commission, the Department of Education, the Department of Budget and Management, and the Bases Conversion and Development Authority for their commitment that allowed us to hit the ground running once President Duterte signs this measure,” Go acknowledged in a speech he delivered during a Senate session last month.
Republic Act 11470 has the following key provisions:
- The National Academy of Sports will develop and implement a secondary education program, integrated with a specialized curriculum on sports, targeting young Filipinos with the talent and desire to develop further their sporting skills. A full scholarship will be offered to qualified natural-born secondary school students.
- Among others, the law requires that the main campus of the NAS shall be established at the existing New Clark City Sports Complex in Capas, Tarlac. It shall be equipped with the necessary sports facilities, housing, and other amenities according to current international standards. School buildings with a sufficient number of classrooms and facilities shall also be constructed at the complex.
- The academy will be attached to DepEd, in close coordination with the PSC, tasked to develop the athletic skills and talents of students in world-class facilities at par with international standards.
- In addition to honing the students, the board of the academy will also be allowed to approve the hiring of licensed foreign coaches, trainers, and consultants duly certified as necessary by PSC. This is to ensure the international competitiveness of the students.