Villar proposes ladderized education to help more poor students

By on June 4, 2014

Sen. Cynthia Villar (Senate Minority Leader Juan Ponce Enrile in the background). Photo from  Villar's Facebook page.
Sen. Cynthia Villar (Senate Minority Leader Juan Ponce Enrile in the background). Photo from Villar’s Facebook page.

MANILA — Sen. Cynthia Villar on Wednesday filed a Senate bill instituting a ladderized system of education for students taking technical-vocational (tech-voc) courses.

Villar said under her Senate Bill 2272 or the “Ladderized Education Act of 2014”, the graduates of tech-voc courses will be given a chance to pursue higher educational courses offered in colleges and universities without having to start all over again.

”The system allows transfer of credits earned from the tech-voc courses to a degree program,” Villar said in her co-sponsorship speech of Senate Bill 2272.

Villar said the ladderized system will benefit the poor and will help them attain higher or further education.

“Students taking up vocational courses are usually the ones who cannot afford to pay university tuition fees. They opt to take the shorter and much cheaper vocational courses so they can immediately find a job and hopefully save for further education later on,” Villar said.

She said ladderized education is an empowering tool because it provides options or choices to the students and workers on when to enter and to exit in the educational ladder.

”Significantly, it creates job platforms at every exit and provides the student an opportunity to get a job and earn income. A student taking up a vocational course on bartending can later go on and earn a degree in Hotel and Restaurant Management under this system,” Villar said.

Villar said the bill will strengthen Executive Order 358 issued in September 15, 2004 to institutionalize a Ladderized Interface between Technical-Vocational Education and Training (TVET) and Higher Education (HE).

Under EO 358, the Technical Education and Skills Development Agency (TESDA) and the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) were mandated to develop and implement a unified national qualifications framework that establishes equivalency pathways and access ramps for a ladderized system allowing for easier transition and progression between TVET and HE.

“Moreover, a fully integrated ladderized education will decrease the number of dropouts and out-of-school youths. In a traditional education setup, if a student discontinues or stops schooling along the way, he or she will be treated as a dropout,” Villar said.

”But with ladderized system, even if he or she stops, she would acquire competency and even receive a certificate. He or she can opt to work first or study or do both at the same time,” Villar added.