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CHED eyes ‘advanced’ ROTC program in college

Janvic Mateo - The Philippine Star
CHED eyes âadvancedâ ROTC program in college
During the Laging Handa briefing on Tuesday, CHED chairman J. Prospero de Vera III expressed “100 percent” support for President Marcos’ call to make ROTC mandatory in Grades 11 and 12.
Reserve Officers Training Corps ROTC FB page

MANILA, Philippines — An optional “advanced” Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) program will be implemented at the college level if the proposal to make it mandatory in senior high school pushes through, the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) said.

During the Laging Handa briefing on Tuesday, CHED chairman J. Prospero de Vera III expressed “100 percent” support for President Marcos’ call to make ROTC mandatory in Grades 11 and 12.

While the proposal primarily concerns basic education, De Vera said it is also expected to affect the National Service Training Program (NSTP) currently implemented in college.

Passed in 2001 following the death of an ROTC officer, Republic Act 9163 or the NSTP Act made ROTC optional and allowed college students to take literacy or civic welfare training service instead of the military training course.

“Once we have ROTC in senior high, the NSTP law will be amended because the optional two years of ROTC at the university level would be converted into an advanced ROTC program,” De Vera said in Filipino.

“The basics would now be in senior high, so what will happen is that the advanced ROTC as an option in NSTP will already produce possible officers that can be recruited into the Armed Forces or to the reserved corps,” he added.

The CHED chief also bared plans to convert college-level ROTC into a certificate or diploma program.

“We have already prepared the syllabus of this diploma program, so those who will choose the ROTC option in NSTP will get an additional diploma,” De Vera said. “They can get a diploma… or certificate in military sciences or diploma in disaster management.”

Marcos identified the mandatory ROTC in senior high school as among his priority pieces of legislation.

De Vera said CHED and the higher education institutions in the country are ready to implement possible changes once the proposal is passed, adding that they have already issued last year the revised implementing guidelines of the NSTP law to improve its implementation.

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