Negros Oriental Third District Rep. Pryde Henry Teves wants the “No Permit, No Exam” policy, reportedly being practiced in some private schools across the country, abolished as it is to the disadvantage of students and teachers.
Teves, who is co-sponsoring the Anti-No Permit, No Exam Act now being deliberated at the Congress, said the policy poses a hassle for both the students who are unable to pay their school fees and their teachers.
“While the student who is barred from taking an examination due to non-payment of school fees is looking for money, his classmates are already taking the test. Once that student finally has the money to pay for the fees, he is at a disadvantage because he spent time scouring for money when he should have been studying for the exam,” said Teves.
Teachers, on the other hand, will also be burdened with more school work as they will have to prepare a different examination for the student.
The Anti-No Permit, No Exam Act introduced by the Kabataan Partylist aims to correct the policy imposed by private schools prohibiting students who have not partially or fully settled their school fees from taking their periodic or final examinations.
The bill states that “such policy effectively bars unpaid students from graduating or obtaining an academic degree, regardless of how hard they have worked for it or how much they academically deserve it.”
Teves, however, stressed that should the bill be passed, a corresponding bill calling for non-disclosure of the students’ financial standing should likewise be made into law.
The Congressman explained that the Anti-No Permit, No Exam Act, if passed, may prompt some private schools to deny the admission of students who they deem might not be able to cope with the school’s tuition fees during enrollment.
“Some private, exclusive schools actually require students to fill up forms asking about their parents’ employment and annual income during the entrance process, and this might lead to discrimination, that students will be admitted based on their financial capacity and not how they scored in the entrance tests,” stressed Teves.
The Third District solon said he has already raised his proposal with the committee responsible for the Anti-No Permit, No Exam policy.
The Commission on High Education had earlier issued a memorandum directing universities and colleges nationwide to allow students to take their final exams regardless of their pending balance of payment of school fees, but the Kabataan Party List claim that the directive has been largely ignored by “hundreds of schools” nationwide.
The 3rd District Representative also expressed support for the 12-year educational cycle, which adds two years to the current 10-year Philippine educational system and will be implemented in June 2012, will lead to graduates with mature, employable skills.
He said the country’s 10-year educational cycle as one of the reasons why Filipino graduates have a hard time landing jobs here and abroad.
“When our high school students graduate, they can’t get a job because they are still minors, they’re too young. If that student applies for a job abroad as a skilled worker, the overseas employers require them to submit a college diploma, whereas for workers from countries on a 12-year educational cycle, a high school diploma will do. Our graduates are at a disadvantage,” stressed Teves.
In the K-12 education system unveiled by the Department of Education, there will be six years in elementary school, four years in junior high and two years in senior high school.
The country’s current education set-up sees 16-year old Filipinos graduating from only four years of high school.
With K-12, Filipino students will graduate from high school at 18 years old, an age Teves said is “ripe enough” for them to secure jobs here and overseas.
Under the new educational cycle, explained Teves, once students reach junior high, they will take an examination to determine if they are prepared for college. Those who qualify will take preparatory subjects for college that will be credited once they enroll in college, while those who don’t will undergo vocational, specialized subjects to be administered for free by the government’s Technical Education Skills Development Authority.
This set-up, he said, will make sure that schools will produce quality and skilled college graduates. “We will be strict; only those who are ready for college should go to college while those who aren’t can take up two years of vocational study with TESDA.”
The lawmaker stressed that it’s high time for the Philippines to follow the footsteps of the more successful and progressive countries such as USA, Japan, Australia and UK that have long been implementing the 12-year educational system.
Philippines is one of the three remaining countries worldwide and the only country in Asia that is not implementing the K-12 cycle. The other two countries are Angola and Djoubouti, a country bordering the Gulf of Aden and the Red Sea in Eastern Africa.
In his announcement of the new educational system, Education Secretary Armin Luistro said the additional two years of senior high school intend to provide time for students to consolidate acquired academic skills and competencies while lifting the quality of Philippine education. (RMN/PIA)