Monday, May 19, 2008

Activists call on CHED to impose moratorium on tuition hikes

Activists call on CHED to impose moratorium on tuition hikes

Article posted May 15, 2008 - 11:09 PM
MANILA, Philippines - Activist group Anakbayan trooped to the Commision on Higher Education on Thursday to demand an immediate moratorium on tuition increases, in light of the continuous increases in the prices of basic commodities.

The youth group claimed that "a moratorium (on tuition increases) is imperative now more than ever with the skyrocketting of oil, food, and electricity prices."

Anakbayan expressed fears that tuition hikes will only increase the number of out-of-school youth.

"With the prices of basic commodities and services continuously rising, the Filipino family is left no choice but to minimize spending on the educational needs of their children," said Anakbayan spokesperson Ken Ramos.

Ramos criticized CHED for its "ineptitude in controlling the rising cost of tertiary education."

"For the past years, the CHED has remained a mere observer as both private and state universities have increased their tuition by as much as 100%," said Ramos.

The University of the Philippines is now charging freshmen with a P1,000 per unit tuition, while the Philippine Normal University increased its tuition from P50 to P100 per unit.The Polytechnic University of the Philippines is collecting a new "developmental fee" amounting to P250 per student.

Private tertiary schools have also applied for tuition increases. The University of Santo Tomas has set a 7% increase. In Western Visayas, around 33 schools have been reported to hike their tuition, some by as much as 15%.

At least 19 private colleges and universities in Cebu City plan to increase tuition by 5 percent to 16 percent when classes resume in June.

Anakbayan challenged CHED Chairman Romulo Neri to intervene in this situation of crisis, and implement a moratorium on all tuition increases in tertiary schools. - GMANews.TV

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