Letters and Statements: An open letter to students, stakeholders, school admin of higher educ’n intstitutions, and the future leaders of our country
February 24, 2010 in Featured
By KABATAAN PARTYLIST
We are the voice of the youth. As a catalytic part of this nation, we are again reaffirming our vital role in nation building and asserting our rights especially that of our right to quality and accessible education. In these turbulent times we ask you, public servants and educational leaders to do the same thing and adhere to our calls.
During Kabataan Partylist’s nine month work in the House of Representatives, we had put forth bills for the youth that have not even attempted by the many who came before us. We lobbied for the approval of House Bill 6799 that prompted the Commission on Higher Education to set up an anti-”no permit, no exam” policy among schools. Truly, another gain for the students but has been denied by universities and colleges locally.
Baguio has taken its role as a university town wherein education sure comes with a high price. Now more than ever, we need the culture of caring and concern that the city drumbeat as we face difficult challenges to come. Surprisingly, there was no development in the so called “education capital of the north” in terms of its services to its student constituency.
This coming academic year, we brace ourselves for increases 5% and up on our tuition and miscellaneous fees. At Saint Louis University, a 5% increase in tuition will strike freshmen who have nothing but high hopes for their education. Not only that, but all other students shall have miscellaneous fees subject to a 6% increase. The University of the Cordilleras likewise increase 10% in tuition for all of their students together with the University of Baguio with 15%. Disappointingly, this year’s round of increases has even reached 556% on a miscellaneous fee.
Today we support our colleagues in the student councils as they lobby and face administrators in local table battles in the universities and colleges where the fight is at the toughest. We support freedom loving students who continue to conduct information drives and activities to raise awareness on the issue. Also, we give recognize the academic and non-academic personnel, who like us, do not receive what is due to them and continue to seek it along with us. Lastly, we give gratitude to our parents and families who will be receiving most of the weight of the coming increases that are supporting us.
We believe that as educators and leaders, it is your imperative to nurture the youth’s minds and to provide them a venue for growth. This cannot happen when education costs a limb to acquire. This cannot happen when profit becomes the primary objective.
To the administrators of higher educational institutions who propose a new round of increases we urge you then, in the name of Filipino education, to bring an end to tuition increase and exorbitant fees. We call for true and democratic consultations to be implemented in schools.
We challenge the Baguio city council and concerned local government units to go out and let us experience a bit of the city’s culture of caring and concern. We urge the council to show and their support for House Bill 2440 or the Tuition Moratorium Bill by intervening and convincing school administrators to withdraw their proposals. Also, we appeal to the Baguio city police officers to protect the rights of students to peacefully organize and assemble. We also urge the local media to propagate issues of youth and students and support us in facing these challenges.
We call for the active concern of our leaders, both present and future, as stakeholders for the youth’s prospects. We compel you to make the necessary improvements to the educational system and allow students from all walks of life to realize their dreams and to serve the country and the people. Leadership cannot be exercised from high places. We, the youth, call for transparency and compassion. We call for an accessible and quality education.# nordis.net