Senator Bam Aquino happily announced that the revolutionary reform for free college education has been funded by Congress, as he voted in support of the ratification of the 2018 national budget.
“Ngayon na may pondo na ng 40 bilyong piso para sa libreng kolehiyo, maaasahan ng mga estudyante na magiging libre na ang tuition at miscellaneous fees sa mga pampublikong unibersidad at kolehiyo,” said Aquino, the principal sponsor and co-author of Republic Act 10931 or the Universal Access to Quality Tertiary Education Act in the Senate.
“Natutuwa tayo na mas maraming Pilipino na ang makaka-graduate sa kolehiyo salamat sa tulong ng gobyerno,” added the legislator.
According to the lawmaker, the bicameral conference committee allotted P40 billion in the 2018 budget for free college education in state universities and colleges, local universities and colleges and TESDA-run vocational schools.
“We thank the members of the bicameral conference committee for prioritizing education. Our sincerest gratitude to our Finance Committee chairperson, Sen. Loren Legarda for defending and working to keep the budget for free education,” said the youthful senator.
However, Aquino said there’s still work to be done once the law is rolled out. “We must ensure that the law is implemented properly for the benefit of our students,” he said.
Thanks to the Universal Access to Quality Tertiary Education Act, tuition fees will be free in SUCs, LUCs and TESDA-run technical vocational schools.
Students will also be spared from paying miscellaneous and all other mandatory fees while scholarship grants will be made available to students of both public and private college and universities.
Under RA 10931, students can also avail of the new and improved student loan program, where they can apply for financing for other educational needs.
“Now that more Filipinos have access to a college education, let’s work on improving the quality of public education in the country,” stressed Aquino.