Sen. Bam Aquino cautioned state universities and colleges (SUCs) from collecting fees from students amid the implementation of the Free College Law.
“If there are mandatory fees still being collected by the schools, that is illegal now,” said Sen. Bam during the budget hearing of the Commission on Higher Education.
“Mag-ingat sila sa kinokolekta nila kasi nasa batas iyan. If it is a mandatory fee, that should not be charged to the students,” added Sen. Bam, principal sponsor of Republic Act 10931 or the Universal Access to Quality Tertiary Education Act.
Sen. Bam made the pronouncement after receiving complaints from students and parents about mandatory fees being collected by SUCS despite the implementation of the free college law.
“May natatanggap pa rin tayong reklamo ukol sa di makatwirang paniningil na ginagawa ng ilang SUCs. Di na ito dapat ginagawa,” said Sen. Bam, also the vice chairman of the Committee on Education.
Republic Act 10931 provides free tuition and miscellaneous fees to students in state universities and colleges (SUCs), local universities and colleges (LUCs) and TESDA-run vocational schools.
Also, the law allows students of both public and private college and universities can also apply for scholarship grants and student loans.
The measure was languishing in the legislative mill for years before it was passed during Sen. Bam’s time as chairman of the Committee on Education in the 17th Congress.