Historical Overview of the Division

 

The Division of Paragua (then the name of the province) was established pursuant to RA 477 having been weaned from the  mother Division of Mindanao, Jolo and Calamianes in early 1902 with office in Cuyo as it was the capital of the province when the civil government was established. One significant provision of RA 477 was that division which then comprised the entire mainland of Paragua and the other islands within its jurisdiction shall be under the governor of the provinces who will act as division superintendent without additional compensation and that every pueblo (town) shall constitute a school district.Thus Edward Miller, who was the governor, automatically acted as superintendent in 1902-1903.

 

            In 1903, the name of the province was changed from Paragua to Palawan pursuant to Act 1363 of the Philippine Commission. The Division Office was then transferred from Cuyo to Puerto Princesa. There were already 31 schools in the province on that year handled by 14 Americans and 37 teachers.

 

            On January 1, 1908, upon instructions from the Secretary of Public Instruction, the Division Office was moved backed to Cuyo, which then had the most number of schools, teachers, and pupils and where the high school, opened in 1906 was situated. Cuyo was then more accessible to and from Agutaya, Coron, Culion, Taytay, Araceli and Cagayancillo.

 

            At the opening of classes in the SY 1909-1920, there were 24 primary schools in the division 9 which was in Cuyo, 4 in Puerto Princesa, 2 in Taytay and 1 each in Agutaya, Coron, Culion and Dumaran. Only Cuyo then had an intermediate schools of Grades V, VI and VII. Including the incomplete secondary, there were 26 schools in the whole province that school year.

 

            During the first American Regime, there were no schools in Southern Palawan except that in the island of Balabac. In 1910 , however, an agricultural school for the Tagbanuas was opened in Aborlan. Another school for Muslims and Palawan tribe was opened in Bonobono (then Brooke’s Point but now in Bataraza in 1912. In 1913, the intermediate schools in Puerto Princesa, Coron, and Taytay were opened.

 

            From 1915 to 1941 before the World War II outbreak, enrolment in the elementary schools increased consistently every year. Secondary enrolment, however, decreased suddenly when Palawan High School was transferred from Cuyo to Puerto Princesa in 1936, although before it was on the rise since Aborlan Agricultural College opened a first year class in 1928. In 1941, first year enrolment suddenly rose when in Grade VI graduates were admitted to the high school. During the liberation, enrolment was bloated due to opening of intermediate classes in the barrio schools and putting up of new primary schools, which soon became complete  elementary schools and new communities were sprouted all over the province because of the coming of settlers from all over the country.



            In 1967 through government program of democratization of access to education,  barangay  high schools were opened . During that year out of 49 high schools 8 had been integrated  to Palawan National High School.At present, there are  already 646 elementary schools  and 172 secondary  schools with a total of 818  elementary and secondary schools both public and private in the Division of Palawan.

 

            Also, out of this institution was borne another Division which is the City Schools Division of Puerto Princesa relative to RA 5906.

            There were 13 Americans (1 deputy, 4 concurrent and 2 in acting capacity) starting with H.D. Lamson as Deputy Superintendent in 1902 to Charles S. Crowther in 1922 served as superintendents of the division while the rest are already Filipinos.