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Private universities, colleges want 12% tuition hike

by UNTV News and Rescue   |   Posted on Thursday, June 14th, 2018


QUEZON CITY, Philippines – Over 200 private universities and colleges in the National Capital Region (NCR) applied for the 11% to 12% tuition increase at the Commission on Higher Education (CHED).

But according to CHED Officer-in-Charge Prospero De Vera III, the petition is still under study by the Commission.

De Vera said the universities and colleges argued that such tuition hike will help them support the increasing cost of operating expenses and salary appraisal for teachers. Also, professors in private schools opt to resign and shift to public schools because of a higher salary.

Meanwhile, CHED is positive that more than one million students will benefit from the free college education program offered by the government this school year 2018 to 2019.

The government has funded the said free college education program with P16 billion. However, CHED is planning to ask for additional P12 billion budget from Congress for the program to accommodate more deserving students for the next school year. – Grace Casin / Marje Pelayo

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SUCs may opt to charge tuition if TRAIN is suspended – CHED

by UNTV News and Rescue   |   Posted on Friday, July 20th, 2018


CHED OIC Prospero De Vera III

PASAY CITY, Philippines – The Commission on Higher Education (CHED) expressed concern over the clamor to suspend the implementation of the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Law.

CHED OIC Prospero De Vera III explained that the implementation of the Free Tuition Act was given an initial budget of P40B for school year 2017-2018 and 2018-2019.

To date, the government’s free tuition program supports around 1.3 million student beneficiaries.

De Vera said the agency expects increase in the number of K to 12 graduates next year, estimated at 400,000 students who are potential beneficiaries of the free tuition program.

This is the reason why CHED is asking for an additional P11B budget for the next school year.

However, De Vera said, if the suspension of TRAIN pushes through, CHED is not sure to sustain the funding for the current scholars.

“The computation of that budget in anchored on revenues generated thru the TRAIN Law. So we cannot expand access to education. We cannot increase the budget if TRAIN is suspended,” De Vera said.

The CHED official explained that prior to the enactment of the Free Tuition Act, state universities and colleges (SUCs) depend on tuition and miscellaneous fees to support their respective operational expenses. However, with the proposed suspension of TRAIN, SUCs would be left the hard choice of passing the burden to students. Otherwise, they will not be able to operate.

“We’ll have to go back and allow state universities to charge tuition. You have to allow them to generate their income somewhere else. And the most reliable source of income in charging tuition and miscellaneous fees,” he said.

De Vera said the suspension of TRAIN will not have much impact on the salary of teachers.

Nevertheless, he said the Duterte administration is not keen on stopping the implementation of the TRAIN Law despite the strong push for its suspension.

“There is no way that we will stop TRAIN because the whole program of the government will be affected if our revenue base is affected. That’s why I have come out publicly to support TRAIN because higher education requires a lot of funding from the national government,” De Vera concluded. – Rey Pelayo / Marje Pelayo


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Employers grapple with lack of qualified workers to hire – ECOP

by UNTV News and Rescue   |   Posted on Wednesday, May 23rd, 2018

FILE PHOTO: Construction workers (PHOTOVILLE International / Ritchie Tongo)


QUEZON CITY, Philippines – Employers group revealed the huge necessity for qualified workers, especially in the construction industry.

According to Arturo Guerrero III, President of the Employers’ Confederation of the Philippines (ECOP,) there is currently a high demand for sanitation and aviation engineers, welders, electricians especially because of the government’s “Build, Build, Build” program.

In fact, Guerrero said, one construction company is actually in need of around 20,000 to 30,000 workers. However, they do not know where to get the manpower.

There is also high demand for medical and service workers such as hotel employees due to the country’s booming tourism industry. Employers are wondering where newly graduates could have gone.

ECOP encourages job seekers to navigate job portals such as jobstreet.com because employers commonly resource employees through them.

“Alam namin kung saan kami pupunta na mga sites. Alam namin kung sinong pupuntahan. Ang problema yung aplikante hindi niya alam kung saan siya pupunta,” Guerrero said.

(We know which sites to go to and who to approach. The problem is, the applicants don’t know where to go.)

Guerrero also stressed that  one challenge for applicants nowadays is not passing international standards such as English proficiency requirements for call center agents.

“It will take 2 weeks to 1 month for us to train them in English proficiency before they can be employed,” Guerrero explained.

In line with this, Commission on Higher Education (CHED) Chair Prospero De Vera said they are now consulting the employers’ sector to help in crafting an appropriate curriculum based on industry requirements.

CHED also plans to strengthen its guidance counselling program to properly guide the students as to which field or what course they will proceed to.

“Who is the key determinant of the outcomes? It is the employers it is those who will use your graduates. So they must have a say in the skill and competencies that every graduate must have,” De Vera said.

Meanwhile, the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) is focusing on the training of scholars in the field of agri-business, health and wellness, hotel and restaurant as well as tourism. However, they are concentrating more on agriculture and construction as these are the industries with very high demand for workers.

“Sa agrikultura nakasalalay ang ating pagkain araw-araw at ang construction naman dahil almost 100,000 ang ating pangangailangan,” said Alvin Feliciano of TESDA’s Educational Skills Development Department.

(Agriculture provides our daily food supply while our construction industry is in need of almost 100,000 workers.) – Rey Pelayo / Marje Pelayo

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CHED kicks off information caravan on Free Higher Education Act

by UNTV News and Rescue   |   Posted on Friday, May 18th, 2018


BULACAN, Philippines – In line with the implementation of the Universal Access to Quality Tertiary Education Act or commonly known as the Free Higher Education Act, the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) kicked off its nationwide information caravan Friday, May 18, in the province of Bulacan.

According to Office-in- Charge and Executive Director Carmelita Yadao-Sison of the Unified Financial Assistance System For Tertiary Education, the caravan aims to educate the public on who may avail of the free tuition in state universities and colleges across the country.

 “Itong universal access kasama na ang tuition, matriculation and 13 others schools fees,” said Yadao-Sison.

The Department of Budget and Management (DBM) allocated P40 billion pesos to fund the Free Higher Education Act which is expected to help around 1.3 million deserving students to enter government public higher education institutions.

Students who are qualified to apply for free college education are those already enrolled in SUCs, accredited local universities and colleges and those studying under TESDA provided they pass the school’s admission and retention standard.

“Free TVET (Technical and Vocational Education and Training) po ay sa vocational technical. Pwedeng kung hindi ka pa magkokolehiyo, gusto mo munang magkaroon ng skills, free din sa TESDA,” the official added.

(Free TVET for vocational technical courses. If you’re holding off college and want to acquire technical skills, you may do so for free at TESDA.)

In exchange for free education, qualified enrollees will commit to return of service after graduation.

“Habang kayo ay estudyante, hindi after mag-graduate kayo [dapat] matuto ka nang first aid, matuto ka ng CPR, matuto ka nang (While you are a student, and not after you graduate, is when you should learn first aid, CPR and) disaster management. You become a better citizen. Ganoon po ang (That is how you) return service,” said CHED’s OIC Commissioner Prospero de Vera III. – Nestor Torres / Marje Pelayo

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