Ched urged to strengthen students’ grants-in-aid program

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Saturday, May 10, 2014


A BILL has been filed in the House of Representatives urging the Commission on Higher Education (Ched) to strengthen the mechanism for monitoring the proper disbursement of stipend of the students' grants-in-aid program for poverty alleviation (SGP-PA).

In his proposal, Davao City Representative Karlo Alexei Nograles said House Resolution 720 urges Ched to regularly submit to Congress reports on the implementation of the SGP-PA.

"Pursuant to the power of Congress to investigate and monitor the implementation of laws and programs, it is imperative to require Ched to submit quarterly reports to Congress to ensure that the intent of Congress in allocating the appropriations for the programs is carried out," Nograles said.

Nograles said that report shall also certify the efficiency of the program to apprise the public on the status of the implementation of the SGP-PA.

The SGP-PA is a government program spearheaded by the Ched in partnership with the Department of Social Welfare and Development and the Department of Labor and Employment towards poverty alleviation.

"The main objective of SGP-PA is to address the problem of poverty and unemployment by increasing the number of graduates in higher education among poor households and enable these graduates to be employed in high-value-added occupations, with the end in view of helping them pull their families out of poverty and contribute to national development," Nograles said.

Under the program, each of the beneficiaries of the SGP-PA program coming from indigent families from the 609 focus municipalities under the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) of the DSWD, is entitled to a maximum scholarship grant of P60,000 per school year to cover the cost of tuition and other fees, books transportation, clothing, board and lodging.

The program, however, stipulates that the parents or guardian of the beneficiary, and the state university or college identified by Ched as partner shall ensure that all financial benefits received by the grantee will be spent for their intended purposes.

"Despite all in-place stipulations in the scholarship contract, incidence of dropping out continues to be unabated due to misapplication of the stipends for personal and family expenses, thus stronger measures should be implemented to monitor the disbursement of stipend provided under the SGP-PA program," the lawmaker said. (Sunnex)

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