Region 12 colleges, universities want 10% tuition increase

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews / 4 April) – Fifteen private colleges and universities in Southwestern Mindanao are seeking an average of 10-percent increase in tuition and other school fees for the upcoming school year.

Dr. Zohrahaydah Panawidan, Commission on Higher Education (CHED) Region 12 assistant director, said Wednesday such figure was based on the total number of colleges and universities in the region that have filed their applications for the fee increases by the end of March deadline.

Region 12 comprises the provinces of South Cotabato, Sultan Kudarat, Sarangani, North Cotabato as well as the cities of General Santos, Koronadal, Tacurong, Kidapawan and Cotabato.

In this city, the colleges and universities that applied for tuition fee increases were the Notre Dame of Dadiangas University, Holy Trinity College, AMA Computer Learning Center and the AMA Computer College.

They were joined by Notre Dame Siena College in Polomolok, South Cotabato; Notre Dame of Marbel University in Koronadal City; Notre Dame of Tacurong College in Tacurong City; I Link College of Science and Technology, AMA Computer College and Dr. P. Ocampo Colleges in Cotabato City; Southern Philippines Methodist College, Central Mindanao Colleges and Notre Dame of Kidapawan College in Kidapawan City; and, Southern Christian College and Notre Dame of Midsayap College in Midasayap, North Cotabato.

Panawidan said they have given the 15 institutions until April 15 to complete all the documentary requirements set by the agency.

She said they will then submit all the applications to the CHED central office, which makes the final evaluation and decision on the matter.

“Our task is only to receive the applications and then screen or check whether they have properly complied with the requirements,” the official said.

Panawidan said the requirements include consultations with students, parents and other concerned groups about the proposed tuition hikes.

“These consultations should have proper documentation. It must include the minutes of the discussions, attendance sheets and other related documents,” she said.

CHED requires that 70 percent of the applied increase in tuition and other school fees should be allocated to the upgrading of teachers’ and school personnel’s benefits, salaries and allowances while the remaining 30 percent should go to improvements in school facilities and equipment.

Region 12 has a total of 92 colleges and universities, 87 of which are owned and operated by private groups, companies and individuals.

Last year, 13 of the 222 colleges and universities nationwide that were granted authority by CHED to implement tuition and school fee increases were from the region. (Allen V. Estabillo / MindaNews)