FACULTY REGENT’S CRITICAL COMMENTS ON THE
PROPOSED TUITION FEE INCREASE(TOFI)
(As per Atanacio Report on STFAP which is implementing guideline for De Dios Report)
Roland G. Simbulan
Professor and Faculty Regent
1. The proposed TOFI is a drastic change of UP Philosophy of Education. It is not a simple adjustment to the eroding value of the Philippine currency.
It is a fundamental shift in the UP philosophy of education “from providing enabling conditions for the poor but talented students of the nation to acquire quality education” to a market-based instrument where prices must be adjusted depending on the customer ability to pay.
It is a fundamental shift in principle that the nation support a long-term investment in education. UP has historically put premium importance in education particularly for the young and talented students coming from the poor families.
2. The proposed TOFI claims that the poor students get more benefits in term of higher stipend.
The Atanacio et al Proposed STFAP guidelines provided deceptive estimates (based mainly on the flawed economic theories of the De Dios Committee Report) on income of the students’ parents.
The estimated income function to be used in determining the income of the students put monetary values to all assets of the familty. This has multiplier effect of 2-3 X of the income supported in the Income Tax Return (ITR). Thus, in the proposed income estimation using 2006 STFAP data, Bracket E (non-paying) STFAP awardees numbering 701 will decrease to 171.
Why all of a sudden these students who are declared very poor and therefore, are exempted in paying tuition fees and are given allowance, suddenly became enriched and they can now afford to pay tuition fees, despite inflation, despite liabilities and other debts of the parents?
What is unbelievable is that the income of P135,000. is already and affordable income, thus, these students who make this income bracket should now already pay P300/unit+ full miscellaneous fees. This income level is free from paying tuition fees in the current STFAP. This income is P11,250./month, and it is 40% the poverty threshold income of P630/day or P18,900./month.
Processes are important in the life of the University. I suggest that we take a serious analysis of the data given by the De Dios and Atanacio Reports.
I therefore therefore request on behalf of my Faculty constituents especially those who attended the UP Diliman Convocation last December 8, to postpone the decision of the Board on this matter for a more objective, academic and scientific discussion with the entire University.
We should post and articulate the technical and statistical data and flawed interpretations of the De Dios and Atanacio Reports for peer, mathematical, academic and scientific reviews from the Faculty – the very lifeblood of the University. Correcting the flaws and problems of these Reports may improve the recommendations on an issue so far reaching in their impact to the life and future of the University.
December 15, 2006
The date posted here is due to our website rebuild, it does not reflect the original date this article was posted. This article was originally posted in Yonip in Dec 28th 2006