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

Daily Tribune (Philippines) - - PAGE THREE -

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.

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