“Marcos Signs “No Permit, No Exam Prohibition Act” to Promote Educational Equity”

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President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. Signs “No Permit, No Exam Prohibition Act”

In a significant move towards educational equity, President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. has signed into law the “No Permit, No Exam Prohibition Act” (Republic Act 11984). This measure allows students with unpaid tuition and other school fees to take periodic and final examinations without requiring a permit. The law covers all public and private basic (K to 12) institutions, higher education institutions (HEIs), and technical vocational institutions (TVIs).

The act mandates that all covered educational institutions accommodate and allow disadvantaged students who are unable to pay tuition and other fees to take exams without a permit. For K to 12 students, this mandate applies for the entire school year. To establish a student’s disadvantaged status due to calamities, emergencies, force majeure, or other justifiable reasons, the municipal, city, and provincial social welfare and development officers, or the regional office of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), will issue the necessary certificates in accordance with the implementing rules and regulations (IRR) issued by the DSWD.

It is important to note that the law does not prejudice the right and power of educational institutions to require the submission of a promissory note or to withhold records and credentials of students. They still have legal and administrative remedies available to them for the collection of unpaid fees.

Any covered public or private educational institution found guilty of violating Section 4 of the act will be subject to administrative sanctions imposed by the Department of Education (DepEd), Commission on Higher Education (CHED), and the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA).

The DSWD, in consultation with all relevant stakeholders, will promulgate the rules and regulations defining “disadvantaged student” and the criteria and requirements for issuing necessary certifications. This collaboration aims to effectively carry out the law.

Hailing the “No Permit, No Exam Prohibition Act” as a Milestone

Speaker Ferdinand Martin Romualdez has hailed the signing of the “No Permit, No Exam Prohibition Act” as a milestone in the country’s journey towards educational equity. He emphasized that the scrapping of the “no permit, no exam” rule breaks down barriers and ensures equal access to education for every student, regardless of their financial background. Romualdez also highlighted the significance of providing equal opportunities for all students to pursue their academic aspirations.

According to Romualdez, education is a fundamental right, and it is the duty of society to create an environment where every student can thrive. He called on schools to adhere to the provisions of RA 11984 and provide necessary accommodations to disadvantaged students. Romualdez emphasized that educational institutions play a vital role in ensuring a smooth transition towards a more inclusive educational environment.

Deputy Minority Leader and ACT Teachers Representative France Castro also expressed her support for the law, stating that it is a significant victory for students’ rights and welfare. She acknowledged that the “no permit, no exam” policy had been a contentious issue, disproportionately affecting students who were unable to comply with certain requirements due to circumstances beyond their control. Castro emphasized that this policy created unnecessary barriers and hindered students’ access to education, exacerbating inequality and marginalization. She believes that the prohibition of this policy is a crucial step towards ensuring that no student is unfairly denied the chance to pursue their education.

Source: The Manila Times

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