Students all over the country will now benefit from the full implementation of RA 10931 or The Universal Access to Quality Tertiary Education Act.
President Rodrigo Duterte witnessed the signing of the agreement between the Comission on Higher Education (CHED) and owners of State Universities and Colleges (SUCS) and Local Universities and Colleges (LUCS) in the country.
In a press conference, CHED Officer-In-Charge (OIC) Prospero de Vera said that the act will take effect in the 2018-2019 school year, in which tution fees and miscellaneous expenses will be paid by the government in 12 SUCS and 78 LUCS nationwide excluding the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM).
Technical vocational insitutions under Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) are also included in the Free Education Act. Admission tests are also free and will be paid by the government.
In the school year 2019-2019, over 1.4 million students will receive free education. This is higher compared to the 900,000 students that were also given free education last school year 2017-2018.
Meanwhile, the agency ensured the school owners of the fast transaction of the reimbursement funds of the Free Tuition Fee Law.
The newly signed Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) requires the mechanism that will be used by CHED to pay for reimbursements in advance.
8 billion pesos worth of funds allotted by the government for the said reimbursement now increased to 16 billion pesos.
CHED is hopeful that the budget will increase next year to accommodate the growing population of students that will apply for free education.