Students hold rally, file tuition Complaints against SLU, UC

>> Sunday, April 9, 2017

Ched urged: Act against illegal fees 

LA TRINIDAD, Benguet -- Students of Saint Louis University and University of Cordilleras in nearby Baguio City held a rally Tuesday here at regional office of Commission on Higher Education and filed complaints against the schools for “illegal” increases in tuition and other fees.
Protesting students said complaints were responses to lack of student consultation despite passing of university proposals to increase tuition and other fees for the next academic year as disclosed by Anakbayan Cordillera and Kabataan Partylist Cordillera.
The groups claimed SLU and UC violated CHED memorandum order number 3 series of 2012, saying it required school administrators to conduct consultations among affected sectors for every increase in school fees.
Article 3 sec. 5 of the memorandum stated “all HEIs, public or private intending to increase tuition and other school fees for the ensuing academic year shall conduct consultations with their student councils/governments, faculty, alumni and
non-teaching personnel associations.”
Luke Bagangan, secretary general of Anakbayan Cordillera and a student of SLU, said their university bypassed said provision.
“It is a mandate of university administrators to uphold student rights for a meaningful consultation. However, it seems students have to beg for their rights as if consultations are discretionary for administrators,” said Bagangan.
The youth group said the SLU administration has not yet responded to the student council’s requests for consultation.
               While talks were conducted in UC, Bagangan said such were far from being “genuine consultation. In UC, how can you call that a consultation if the school administration failed to compromise with the anti-tuition fee sentiments of the students?”
                The group claimed yearly increases in both universities have resulted to increased drop-out rate of students.
A study of Kabataan Partylist revealed for every hundred students who enroll in universities and colleges in Baguio, only 65 reach second year.
The study also noted 28 SLU students and 36 UC students for each of their 100 students drop out of school before reaching second year.
Discrepancies among number freshmen enrollees and yearly graduates were also recorded in the study, where graduates were “far lower” than that of freshmen enrollees, according to Kabataan Partylist.
“Only one out of two students graduate in SLU while only two out of five will graduate in UC,” the study said.
In another study of the group, an increase of five percent in total fees among the three biggest universities in Baguio City, will reduce enrolment of current students, excluding incoming freshmen, by as much as 57%.
SLU is set to increase their tuition at all year levels at 5 to 10% while UC rates will increase at 5 to 6% for selected year levels.


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