Along with the confirmation of its newly-elected private sector representatives, Calabarzon’s Sectoral Committee on Social Development endorsed to the Regional Development Council key measures on education, academe-industry linkage, and drug rehabilitation during its 3rd quarter meeting last August 11 at the National Educators Academy of the Philippines in Malvar, Batangas.
Given the perceived benefits of the senior high school Voucher Program, the Committee endorsed its institutionalization. The program expands students’ choices among senior high programs most relevant to their career goals by providing tuition fee subsidy to Grade 10 completers who wish to enroll in private and other non-DepEd schools. In the process, it promotes private sector investment in basic education. In Calabarzon, the Voucher Program encouraged higher private senior high enrollment which helped address the initial absorptive capacity of public senior high schools. Related to this, the Committee also endorsed the request for the Private Education Assistance Committee to relax its guidelines on voucher payment for state universities and colleges.
The Committee also endorsed the proposal to allow night shift for specific sectors and for non-minors in the Dual Training System law and its implementing rules. This will enable students who are 18 years old and above, to acquire industry skills and experience in some sectors such as business process outsourcing, manufacturing and semiconductor industries which have bulk operations during night time.
Meanwhile, as thousands of drug suspects surrendered following intensified police operations under Oplan Takhong and Operation Double Barrel, the Committee agreed that the next logical step is to enhance the region’s drug rehabilitation program. As part of the enhancement, the Committee endorsed the creation of a task force to facilitate the delivery of relevant services, which is parallel with the national inter-agency task force formed in July. The DILG, DOH and the LGUs were tasked to undertake the profiling of drug suspects who surrendered.
According to Committee Vice Chairperson Luis G. Banua, the task force will focus on the social aspect of the drug situation and will complement the PDEA and PNP-led task force created by the Sectoral Committee on Macroeconomy and Development Administration. The latter is set to strengthen anti-drug law enforcement in the region.
Khane Samala-Raza, NEDA Region IV-A | Thursday, August 18, 2016