Ensure safety of students, CHEd urged
In the implementation of policies, listen to the students, the parents, the professors. We all have to be in this together. The national government is here to help you
As the country’s education system adjusts to the adverse effects of the ongoing health crisis, Senator Christopher “Bong” Go last Monday implored the Commission on Higher Education (CHEd) and the leadership of all state universities and colleges to ensure the safety and well-being of their students and personnel.
During a hearing conducted by the Senate Committee on Finance, Go urged all sectors involved to work together for the good of the studentry.
“In the implementation of policies, listen to the students, the parents, the professors. We all have to be in this together. The national government is here to help you,” Go said.
While expressing his full support to the agency and educational institutions during the budget hearing, Go quizzed CHEd about the low number of universities and colleges with Centers of Excellence, Center of Development, with recognized flagship program, with Autonomous or Deregulated status, or with Level III or Level IV accredited programs.
“Only 18 percent of Higher Education Institutions are with Centers of Excellence, Center of Development, with recognized flagship program, with Autonomous or Deregulated status, or with
Level III or Level IV accredited programs,” Go noted.
“Ideally, the more we have of these excellent educational institutions, the better the quality of our education,” Go lamented as CHEd chair J. Prospero de Vera III emphasized that the quality of education is correlated to the level of government investment.
Only 18 percent of Higher Education Institutions are with Centers of Excellence, Center of Development, with recognized flagship program.
Go asked for updates regarding the agency’s initiatives to render services in the education sector via digital means, saying, “I am pushing for the country’s transition to the digital age through the E-Governance bill I filed. I see that CHEd has been implementing initiatives to render services through digital means.”
“On this end, what are the primary obstacles which the CHEd had encountered in its initiatives to use information and communications technology to improve the higher education system and how did you address these?” he asked.
While some progress has been made, de Vera lamented that connectivity is still low in many external campuses around the country. For that, de Vera mentioned that the agency will need the help from other government agencies to resolve the connectivity issues in various educational institutions nationwide.
In July of this year, Go filed a measure institutionalizing the transition of the government to e-governance in the digital age.
Senate Bill 1738, or the E-Governance Act of 2020, mandates the government to establish an integrated, interconnected, and interoperable information and resource-sharing and communications network spanning the entirety of the national and local government, an internal records management information system, an information database and digital portals for the delivery of public services.
Meanwhile, Go reminded CHEd to deliver on the President’s directive to help students who are children of overseas Filipino workers (OFW).
Last 31 August, President Rodrigo Duterte announced the one-time grant of P30,000 as assistance to college students who are children of OFW who were displaced, repatriated, deceased or affected due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The grant is intended for qualified beneficiaries who are enrolled or about to enroll in any state or private colleges and universities recognized by CHEd. An estimated 33,000 students are expected to benefit from this assistance.