Pushes for measures beyond free tuition
In time for this year’s graduation season, Senatorial aspirant Pia S. Cayetano reiterated her commitment to champion measures that will improve the quality of education for Filipino students and provide them with more assistance.
Cayetano was in Bacolod City on Sunday, where she met with members of the city’s Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) Federation to discuss how she will push for programs to help the youth. The congresswoman said she intends to lobby for increased budget allocation for education to institutionalize measures that will complement the law on free tuition in State Universities and Colleges (SUCs).
“Our education budget should not stop at free tuition. It should include investments in the quality of education. We should rank our universities and even the private schools based on this kind of quality,” she said in a mix of Ilonggo and English.
Cayetano said more funds should be allotted for the improvement of schools’ infrastructure, training programs for Filipino teachers, as well as additional assistance for poor and deserving students. She noted that, despite the free tuition for college students, parents still have to shoulder expenses required to take their children to school, including costs for food, transportation, board and lodging, books, and other school supplies, among others.
“There are many more benefits for our students that I plan to institutionalize if I return to the Senate,” Cayetano said in a radio interview also in the city. She said she plans to adopt the best practices of local governments in promoting better access to quality education, such as Taguig City’s Lifeline Assistance for Neighbors In-need (L.A.N.I.), a comprehensive scholarship program intended for the city’s constituents.
The LANI Program offers different scholarship types, including scholarships for students enrolling in premier Philippine universities, grants for those pursuing Masteral or Doctoral degrees, and review assistance for graduates preparing for their board or bar examinations.
“In Taguig, we are very proud that we have a comprehensive program on education. Those are the kinds of programs that I want replicated; the best practices in education that we can institutionalize and standardize,” Cayetano noted. #