CHED: Strict imposition of rules vs schools wanting to raise fees
May B. Miasco/RHM (The Freeman) - February 27, 2015 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines - While questioning the National Union of Students of the Philippines data on the number of schools that intend to increase tuition for the coming academic year, the Commission on Higher Education has assured that the said universities and colleges would be made to strictly follow regulations.

CHED Chairperson Patricia Licuanan said in a statement that they would ensure higher education institutions obey the rules, including the requirement for consultation, the distribution of tuition fees, and strict adherence with procedures meant for tuition increases to be “transparent, reasonable and affordable.”

“The Commission, with the help of the Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS) is developing a systematic, data-based, broadly acceptable framework for tuition and other school fees to guide the agency in deciding on a reasonable rate of increase each year,” read her statement.

Licuanan appealed for the colleges and universities “to carefully study their tuition and other fee increases each year and to spend wisely and judiciously in order to lessen the costs of its most important stakeholders – its students.”

CHED-7 Supervising Education Program Specialist Dr. Josefino Ronquillo, on the other hand, said they have been encouraging Central Visayas institutions to minimize tuition increases so as to provide better access to higher education, particularly with private educational institutions.

“We are doing our best nga mogamay ang number sa mga schools nga mag-increase. Gihangyo pa namo ang mga eskwelahan nga dili sila magpatuyang og increase sa ilang tuition to give access to the individual learners that wish to enroll in a private school,” he said.

He also said that while he recognized the sentiments of students, as it is their right to express their views, they “should think critically and analytically on what they are saying” against tuition increases.

He said justifications are required for tuition hike proposals. The increase, he should be 70 percent for the salary and benefits of employees, including teaching and non-teaching staff, 20 percent for the improvement of the institution’s building and facility, and 10 percent for return of investment.

“Ten percent will go into their pocket while all others are allotted to their operation, both human and material resources of the school operation,” Ronquillo said.

He said CHED is watching out for education institutions that exploit their students by collecting unnecessary fees.

NUSP, in an estimate made through its tuition monitor network, had said that around 400 universities and colleges intend to increase tuition and other school fees for the next academic year.

It noted that in 2014–2015, CHED approved the request of 287 of 345 higher education institutions; and 354 of 451 in the 2013-2014 academic year.

Licuanan said that after the deadline of submission on April CHED would be able to present a more realistic estimate on the number of schools asking for fees increases for 2015- 2016.  (FREEMAN)

 

CENTRAL VISAYAS CHAIRPERSON PATRICIA LICUANAN DEVELOPMENT STUDIES DR. JOSEFINO RONQUILLO EDUCATION HIGHER EDUCATION LICUANAN NATIONAL UNION OF STUDENTS OF THE PHILIPPINES PHILIPPINE INSTITUTE TUITION
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