THE Cebu Provincial Government will review the scholastic performance of over 1,000 beneficiaries of Capitol’s Paglaum Scholarship Program to check if they can qualify in new academic standards set in the proposed Cebu Province Grants Intended for Tertiary Students (CP-Gifts).
Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia said that if the CP-Gifts ordinance is passed, Paglaum scholars may apply for as long as they are able to maintain a general average of at least 85 percent.
“Why should it be anything less? As I’ve always said, let us not redefine the word scholar. The word itself carries the requirement of academic excellence,” Garcia said.
“It would be quite difficult to just let anyone qualify, especially when there were considerations given,” said Garcia in a mix of English and Cebuano.
The Paglaum program, which began in 2016 under the administration of Gov. Hilario Davide III, was instituted by the office of then vice governor Agnes Magpale.
Garcia alleged that Capitol continued to accept scholars on the last days of Davide’s term even though she was already proclaimed as the new governor.
“What was that for? For me, it was even a midnight deal. Supposed to be, that shouldn’t have been the case because you are binding the governnment for the next four years at least,” she said.
SunStar tried to get Davide and Magpale’s comments on the governor’s claims; however, they could not be reached on their cellular phones last night.
An estimated 200 Paglaum scholars from different universities visited the governor’s office last Oct. 11 hoping that Garcia would directly hear their plea to continue the program so as not to disrupt their studies.
The CP-Gifts ordinance which aims to replace the Paglaum scholarship program was passed on second reading on Monday, Oct. 14. Authored by Provincial Board Member Christopher Baricuatro (7th district), the ordinance, if approved, will be implemented beginning school year 2020-2021.
The governor, though, assured around 200 graduating Paglaum scholars that the Capitol will settle their payables to allow them to get their transcript of records.
She said that the matter has been discussed with the universities the scholars attend in order to show Capitol’s commitment.
“For me, let’s do things right. Let’s do it the way it should be done because we’re spending public funds and I believe we should always raise the bar. Let’s not be contented with good enough,” Garcia said. (RTF)