Students in state universities and colleges (SUCs) and local universities and colleges (LUCs) can start availing themselves of free tuition, although this hinges on the requirements of their respective institutions.

Philstar.com/File
CHED issues implementing rules and regulations on free tuition law
(The Philippine Star) - March 27, 2018 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The Commission on Higher Education (CHED) released yesterday the implementing rules and regulations (IRR) for Republic Act 10931 or the Universal Access to Quality Education Act that would take effect this coming school year.

Students in state universities and colleges (SUCs) and local universities and colleges (LUCs) can start availing themselves of free tuition, although this hinges on the requirements of their respective institutions.

Prospero de Vera III, CHED officer-in-charge, stressed that students who wish to continuously benefit from the law must meet all the admission and retention requirements.

“This is not a license to accept everyone to universities and colleges. This is for students who are in good standing, meaning they passed the admission and retention requirements of the universities – finish their degree on time and are enrolled in the required number of units per year,” De Vera was quoted as saying by GMA News TV.

“If you are kicked out, then you stop receiving government subsidy because you did not comply with the retention requirements of the university,” he added.

The issuance of the IRR came seven months after President Duterte signed RA 10931 into law.

At least P40 billion have been allocated for its implementation. Of the amount, P16 billion is for free higher education, P7 billion for free technical vocational education, P15.9 billion for tertiary education subsidy, P1 billion for the student loan program and P11 million for the tertiary education tracking and reporting system.

Lawmakers who championed and supported the enactment of the law – including Sens. Ralph Recto, Bam Aquino, Sonny Angara and Reps. Karlo Nograles and Evelina Escudero – attended yesterday’s IRR launching.

“What we basically achieve with this law is to really have a situation where... you won’t even pay a single peso to the public school system,” Aquino said in his speech.

The IRR provides that all Filipino students enrolled in SUCs, LUCs and technical-vocational schools will be exempted from paying tuition and other school fees, such as miscellaneous fees that also cover payments for admission, library, laboratory and computers, among others.

For those enrolled in technical-vocational schools, the cost of utilities, facilities, equipment and tools maintenance, miscellaneous fees, as well as the honoraria of trainers are also waived.

Students enrolled in private higher education institutions may also avail of tertiary education subsidy covering tuition and other school fees, while a student loan program will also be established for Filipino students to further support the cost of tertiary education.

The IRR also provides that all students with financial capacity may opt out of the benefits they will receive under the law.

COMMISSION ON HIGHER EDUCATION UNIVERSAL ACCESS TO QUALITY EDUCATION ACT
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