MANILA, August 5, 2011—A bill that will allow students to take examination despite unpaid fees is a whiff of good news in the midst of decreasing subsidy in public education.
The House of Representatives has passed in the third and final reading the Anti ‘No Permit, No Exam’ bill which states that no student shall be denied from taking his/her examination because of unpaid fees.
It is now up to the Senate whether it would adopt the full bill or make some revisions and then submit it to the President to sign it into law.
This was the good news for students by Kabataan Partylist Rep. Raymond V. Palatino, the primary author of the bill amidst budget cuts in the public universities and colleges.
“The giant leap in our anti-‘no permit, no exam’ campaign was achieved primarily due to the unity of students and parents and the quick action of Congress to boost the passage of the bill into law. This is good news and it sends a message to schools to desist implementing the ‘no permit, no exam’ policy,” Palatino said in a statement.
“[With the passing of the law], students could now focus on studying for their examinations and not worry if they cannot pay the school fees on time,” said Palatino.
The bill provides penalty of P50,000 and censure for violators, be it a public or private academic institution.
On the other hand, as a safety net for schools, academic institutions may charge up to six per cent (6%) interest rate of fees due them by students. Schools may also withhold the records of students but should release them once the pending arrears are settled, the bill stated. (Noel Sales Barcelona)