Villar vows to push husband’s anti-no permit, no exam bill

March 19, 2013 11:38 pm 

BUTUAN City, March 19 – If elected senator, Team PNoy candidate Cynthia Villar vowed Tuesday to pursue the no permit, no exam bill filed by her husband, outgoing Sen. Manny Villar, two years ago.

Villar assured this as she lamented the death of University of the Philippines student Kristel Tejada who committed suicide because she was reportedly forced to take a leave of absence from her studies for failure to pay tuition on time.

“What happened to Kristel is very regrettable especially since she was enrolled in a government-subsidized institution mandated to provide high quality education to poor but deserving students,” Villar said as the Team PNoy barnstormed this city for whole-day campaign sortie.

Villar, whose term ends in June this year, filed the bill to keep higher educational institutions from implementing “no permit, no exam” policies, saying it amounts to depriving students the right to take examinations.

The bill, however, allows schools to withhold grades and clearances of students and keep them from enrolling again until they settle their accounts.

Villar’s counterpart bill in the House of Representatives was approved in the third and final reading but Senate Bill 2992 only reached the Senate committee education chaired by Senator Edgardo Angara.

”It is necessary to look into the need to expand the government’s study and scholarship programs in the state colleges and universities,” Villar, a former Las Pinas congresswoman, said.

She said there should also be a review of the SUCs policies for non-payment of tuition fees.

“Perhaps, it’s about time to review these policies,” she said, adding Tejada’s suicide showed the lack of access to education in the country.

”Imagine, Kristel, considered a Iskolar ng Bayan at the state university, killed herself as she has no money to pay her tuitions fees. It’s indeed sad and a total dismay,” she added.

Meanwhile,Villar’s fellow Team PNoy candidate former Senator Ramon Magsaysay Jr. welcomed the decision of the UP Manila Chancellor Manuel Agulto to suspend the school’s ‘no late payment’ policy that triggered Tejada to end her life.

”We believe, however, that its controversial “no late payment” policy is anti-poor, and the academic institution should immediately scrap it. We urge the Board of Regents to review the policy,” Magsaysay said.

”We continue our call to review the financial policies of public and private schools, colleges and universities to prevent another tragic incident,” he added.

Team PNoy senatorial candidate Edgardo “Sonny” Angara asked the government to immediately act on educational reforms before another student takes his own life because he was deprived of the education he deserves.

“One death is enough. This should serve as a wake-up call for all of us,” Angara said.

“Let's stop pointing fingers and putting the blame on others since we're all part of the system. The best we can do is use this as an opportunity to gather support for much-needed reforms to education,” he added.

Amid the public dismay and outrage, the veteran lawmaker from Aurora called for stronger support and higher subsidy from the government to provide more scholarships for the poor.

Angara has been pushing for higher budget for state universities and colleges since he was named chair of the House Committee on Higher and Technical Education in 2010.

Last year, Malacanang approved the proposed hike, increasing the budget of SUCs by almost 44 percent, up from P25.85 billion in 2012 to P37.12 billion in 2013. (PNA)

HBC/JFM

Comments

2 Responses to “Villar vows to push husband’s anti-no permit, no exam bill”

  1. GalangIzza on March 20th, 2013 4:49 am

    Good Article though, I hope this will justify Kristel’s death.. Angara is right, this is just a wake up call.. one death is not enough. so we need reforms to answer the problems of the poor students from State and Gov’t Universities.

  2. haime56 on March 20th, 2013 4:51 am

    I hope this will no happen again.,,, and I hope the programs should be focus by our legislators. ..the answer to poverty is education,,,, so they must support the education system in our country….