By Calvin D. Cordova
Cebu City – The Commission on Higher Education (CHED) expects an increase in enrollees this coming school year with the graduation of the first batch of the K to 12 program.
Last school year, there were less than one million enrollees in state universities and colleges (SUCs) and local universities and colleges (LUCs), according to Dr. Prospero E. De Vera III, CHED officer-in-charge.
“This school year, we are expecting 1.2 million enrollees from first year to fourth year,” De Vera said during the Free Education Nationwide Caravan on R.A. 10931 last Friday in Lapu-Lapu City.
CHED Central Visayas Director Freddie Bernal said there were only 218,000 enrollees in SUCs and LUCs in the region.
“For this coming school year, we have a conservative estimate of 230,000 enrollees,” said Bernal.
The number does not include enrollees in private schools and beneficiaries of the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA).
De Vera explained that while the law formalizing K to 12 is already in effect, students still have to go through an admission test to earn free tuition in SUCs and LUCs.
“The law does not guarantee that a student can go to college without passing an admission test but it increases the options of the students,” De Vera said.
The caravan arrived in Lapu-Lapu after stops in Zamboanga, Palawan, and Iloilo.
Lapu-Lapu City Mayor Paz Radaza welcomed the participants that included officials from CHED and representatives from educational institutions, local government units and non-government organizations.