CHEd-7 approves 12 percent tuition hike in Central Visayas
THE COMMISSION on Higher Education in Central Visayas (CHEd – 7) has approved an average of 12 percent tuition increase for first year level in some private higher education institutions (HEIs) in the region.
CHEd-7 Director Dr. Freddie Bernal said the CHEd commission en banc has yet to confirm the approved increase.
“The Commission en banc needs to confirm approval of the TF (tuition and other fees) increase,” he said in a text message.
The CHEd Central Office has announced last May that they have approved the applications of 268 private HEIs nationwide to increase their tuition and other school fees for the academic year 2017 to 2018. It was not, however, indicated which of these schools are in Cebu.
The increase was based on Section 42 of Batas Pambansa Blg. 232 , or the Education Act of 1982, which provides that “Each private school shall determine its rate of tuition and other school fees or charges… subject to rules and regulations promulgated by the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sports (now the Department of Education or DepEd).”
Wenilyn Sabalo, an incoming senior in college, said the plan to increase tuition would have an impact even for students like her who enjoy a scholarship grant.
Sabalo, an academic scholar of the University of San Jose-Recoletos (USJ-R), enjoys a 50 percent tuition discount and receives an additional P15,000 allocation from the CHEd scholarship program.
However, she needs to pay for the remaining balance of the tuition and other school fees. The cost of school projects are also expected to increase amid the rising prices of goods and products, she added.
On the other hand, taxi driver Robert Rosales, 34, who has been supporting a younger sibling studying at a government-run college, also has to make an adjustment.
Rosales’ sister, who is studying at the Cebu Technological University (CTU) in Daanbantayan town, is one of the beneficiaries of the free tuition law.
But Rosales said that his earnings have shrunk because of fuel price increases and he would have to double his efforts so that he could send his sister’s allowance while still providing food for his family.
Lawyer Ernesto Carreon, the labor sector’s representative to the Regional Tripartite Wages and Productivity Board in Central Visayas (RTWPB-7) said the tuition hike will be an added burden to parents, especially low income workers.
He added that the recent daily wage increase of P20 for Metro Cebu workers is not enough to cover for the increase in the prices of basic commodities and, now, tuition.
“The wage adjustment just lately made is certainly not enough to cover the spiraling prices of basic and prime commodities, much less the increase of tuition fees,” he said.
Associated Labor Unions-Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (ALU-TUCP) spokesperson Alan Tanjusay, on the other hand, said the tuition increase in HEIs would result to more students enrolling in state-run universities in order to get access to free tuition.
“As a consequence of this shift, we also expect more poor students to be discouraged from going to school and become out-of-school youths,” he added.
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