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Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Gatchalian says EDCOM II now ready to buckle down to work

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The Second Congressional Commission on Education (EDCOM II) is all set to perform its mandate to evaluate Philippine education sector’s performance starting January 2023, Senator Sherwin Gatchalian confirmed on Wednesday.

Sitting as co-chairman of EDCOM II, Gatchalian said the commission “will boost the administration’s efforts to effectively address the country’s education crisis aggravated by the Covid-19 pandemic.”

Created by virtue of Republic Act No. 11899, the First Congressional Commission EDCOM II Act was sponsored by Gatchalian during the 18th Congress to assess the status of education nationwide in order to push reforms to deal with the crisis. “Sa pagbubukas ng 2023, agaran nating sisimulan ang maigting na pagsusuri sa estado ng edukasyon sa ating bansa. Sa pamamagitan ng EDCOM II, magpapanukala at magsusulong tayo ng mga repormang tutugon sa krisis na bumabalot sa sektor ng edukasyon,” said Gatchalian.

The senator confirmed the EDCOM II agenda will “evaluate how mandates are observed under the laws that created the Department of Education [DepEd], the Commission on Higher Education [CHED], and the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority [Tesda],” expecting that “EDCOM II’s national assessment will also recommend transformative, concrete, and targeted reforms to make the Philippines globally competitive in both education and labor markets.”

As passed into law, he recalled that Republic Act No. 11899 also created an Education, Legislation and Policy Advisory Council to provide the commission with expert assistance and advice, adding that last December, the Senate named the members of the Advisory Council.

Moreover, Pasig City Mayor Vico Sotto and Taguig City Mayor Lani Cayetano were named policy advisors from local government units (LGUs). Former Ateneo de Manila University President Fr. Bienvenido Nebres and former University of the Philippines College of Social Sciences and Philosophy dean Dr. Maria Cynthia Rose Bautista to serve as advisors from the academe, while Mr. Alfredo Ayala and Dr. Chito Salazar will represent the business sector. Also named to represent government education agencies were former Tesda director-general Irene Isaac, and Private Education Assistance Committee Executive Director Doris Ferrer will also serve as policy advisors.

To complete the membership to the Advisory Council, Synergeia Foundation and the Civil Society Network for Education Reforms (E-Net Philippines) will represent civil society organizations and development partners engaged in education.

It will be recalled that EDCOM II was tasked to accomplish its mandate within three years from its organization with the Philippine Institute for Development Studies serving as the commission’s research arm.

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