MAYOR Nicholas Yulo Thursday, November 9, expressed optimism that Bago City College can avail of the free tuition fund to be provided by the government among local and state universities and colleges starting next school year.
The National Government earlier said that a portion of the P6-billion debt settlement of Philippine Airlines (PAL) will fund the education of students in LUCs and SUCs in the country.
The airline’s financial obligations included unpaid navigation fees to the government since in the 1970s.
Yulo said the Commission on Higher Education (Ched) has already been inviting local government unit (LGU)-based colleges like the Bago City College to access the free tuition program of the government.
“Our school administrator has been attending a series of meetings with the Ched. Until now, we still do not have clear guidelines as to how can we avail the free tuition fund,” he added.
The Bago City College is a Ched-accredited tertiary school that has a current population of about 4,000.
The city college, which caters to students mostly from other localities, has a tuition rate of P100 per unit.
Yulo said now that the school has already made a representation with the Ched, they are upbeat that LUCs in the province can also avail of the allocation.
Last August, President Rodrigo Duterte signed Republic Act 10931, or the Universal Access to Quality Tertiary Education Act, which grants free tuition to all SUCs and LUCs in the country.
This was amid unclear source of funds for an estimated cost of P100 billion for the program.
The Ched estimated that P34.1 billion would be needed for the implementation of the law.
The House of Representatives has allocated P40-billion to fund the free tertiary education in more than 100 LUCs and SUCs, including those Negros Occidental.
Published in the SunStar Bacolod newspaper on November 10, 2017.
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