LINGAYEN, Pangasinan -- Various schools in Pangasinan are being urged to employ security guards especially at night.

Members of the Provincial Board made the recommendation to school authorities during its regular session last June 1 to deter school robberies, which appeared to become rampant during the past month.

During the session, different school divisions of Pangasinan spoke on their plans of action, particularly on the rampant school equipment robbery incidents.

Lawyer Donato Balderas Jr., Pangasinan 2 school division superintendent, admitted that not all schools under his jurisdiction have a security guard or at least a personnel that stay beyond school hours to secure the premises.

In Pangasinan 2, at least four school robbery incidents were recorded last April in a secondary school in Binalonan and in elementary schools in the towns of Sta. Maria, Rosales, and Pozorrubio.

In these cases, about P400,000 worth of computers and accessories were lost.

Balderas said computers are very significant to the children's education because these gadgets somehow solve the problem of insufficiency of text books. Thus, he proposed that local school boards allocate fund to pay for personnel to secure the schools.

Angeline Casipit, Pangasinan 1 chief of schools governance and operations, said the presence of school guards can be deterrent to the commission of crimes.

Board members then expressed their support to the allocation of funds for security personnel.

Sixth district Board Member Alfonso Bince Jr. even suggested that schools, especially big national high schools, shall consider the installation of closed-circuit television cameras to further deter crimes.

A week ago, new officer-in-charge of the Pangasinan Provincial Police Office, Senior Superintendent Belli Tamayo, ordered police chiefs to coordinate with municipal and school heads in the matter of securing their schools.

He proposed the tapping of force multipliers or civilian volunteers to secure the school since the number of police personnel remains insufficient.

The inquiry coincided with the opening of classes in public schools in the country.

Pangasinan 1 school division has more than 300,000 elementary and high school students, while Pangasinan 2 has over 200,000 enrollees. Alaminos City has around 18,000 enrollees. (PNA)