The Commission on Higher Education (CHEd) on Sunday admitted that the proposed budget cut in the commission’s funding for 2011 will adversely affect its scholarship and faculty development program.
Lawyer Julito Vitriolo, CHEd executive director, said the looming budget cut, which would see the commission’s funding down from this year’s P2.54 billion to P1.69 billion next year, would also affect its plan to provide financial assistance to students coming from disadvantage families to pursue college education.
“Medyo maapektuhan talaga dahil sa walang dagdag na budget so ang gagawin ng CHEd i-maintain na lang ang scholarship namin ngayon (It would really affect since there would be no additional budget, so CHEd would just maintain current scholarship),” Vitriolo said.
Funding for the CHEd scholarship program next year was down to P501 million from the present P1.15 billion.
The commission has given P840 million worth of scholarships to over 57,000 beneficiaries this academic year.
Aside from the scholarship program, Vitriolo said the faculty development program of CHED, which funds masteral and doctoral scholarships for professors, will also have to be scaled down next year from their original targets.
The funding for the state universities and colleges (SUC) have already taken a hit as they will receive only P23.08 billion, 1.7 percent lower than the budget this year.
Earlier, CHEd Chairperson Dr. Patricia Licuanan said that limited access to quality higher education as well as the increasing costs of tertiary education and limited student assistance program are among the stumbling block to achieving their efforts to provide quality education to all Filipino.
Licuanan said a study conducted by CHEd showed that of 100 children who entered Grade 1, only 66 finished Grade 6, 43 completed their high school education while only 33 enrolled in college or university.
Of the 33, only 21 will be able to graduate from college, the study noted.
Another study dubbed the “Transformation of Philippine Education in the Next Decade” showed that CHEd was only able to provide scholarship slots to about eight percent of the average 2.6 million enrollment in the last five years.
Of the total enrollment in that period, the study said 32 percent belong to poor or disadvantage families. (PNA)