Public consultation pushed for tuition hikes

BAGUIO City Councilor Edgar Avila wants the public to have a say on tuition and other fee increase.

“The tuition fee ordinance would supplement the existing Memo circular of CHED and as long as there is no conflict with national law, it can be enforced,” Avila said.

Avila wants colleges and universities to implement a mandatory consultation 45 days before the end of each school year but not during summer term.

During the council session last week, Saint Louis University, University of Baguio and the University of the Cordilleras were present upon invitation of Avila.

“Expectedly the schools are cool to the proposal but they are supposed to submit position paper on the matter then a committee report will be made crafting the final ordinance,” added Avila.

The new law states one of the basic problems of the youth and education sector when school opening comes each year is the rigmarole of tuition increases.

“Agreeably, the schools most often than not consult the students, before imposing an increase, but unfortunately, such consultations are done during the summer classes when only a portion of the student leaders are out on vacation. Invariably, the results, vis-a-vis, an increase in tuition fee becomes only known at the start of the school year and because of the perceived failure to conduct consultations, student unrests becomes inevitable,” said Avila.

Avila added the ordinance seeks to remedy the situation by requiring mandatory consultations and holding such consultations during the regular semester and not during summer classes.

Consultations will be done with the presence of the chairman of the Council’s Committee on Education.

The new law mandates all private educational institutions through its Board of Trustees are required to hold consultations with its students through bonafide student representatives on proposed increases in tuition and other fees.

Such consultations will be supervised by the Department of Education, Culture and Sports, Commission on Higher Education, and Chairman of the Council’s Committee on Education which a certification on the compliance of the requirement, will form part of the application for tuition fee increase by the institution.


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