CHED grants P5,000 aid to students in Yolanda-hit areas

The Commission on Higher Education (CHED) on Tuesday told all public and private colleges and universities to accept all transferees from Marawi City even with "incomplete records". He said public and private educational institutions have to verify the student applicants who can avail the cash assistance.

CHED Commissioner Prospero de Vera III said this was the same strategy employed to accommodate students affected by the onslaught of super-typhoon "Yolanda" a few years ago.

The Ched rolled out on Tuesday a P317-million tuition-assistance program for students of eight medical state universities and colleges-Mariano Marcos State University, University of Northern Philippines, Cagayan State University, Bicol University, University of the Philippines-Manila, West Visayas State University, Mindanao State University and University of the Philippines School of Health Science.

"The Office of the President instructed the Ched to expedite the use of this money", de Vera said. "It's a one-time cash assistance long overdue because this is Yolanda-related, but we're making sure that the release will be expedited", de Vera said. "In a way, it's fortunate that it's summer because they changed their school opening, they've moved a lot of their operations to the Iligan campus [MSU-IIT]", she said.

A formal advisory to the colleges and universities will be issued by CHED in the next few days, according to De Vera.

Meanwhile, de Vera added the Ched is eyeing the waiver of the requirements for students from Marawi City, Lanao del Sur, applying to transfer in a Metro Manila-based school.

De Vera said the Ched commission en banc had already approved the advisory three days earlier to give students from Marawi an opportunity to enroll in its other schools even sans complete records.

"This is like what we did in the case of Yolanda. The records can come later", he added.

The government troops launched attacks against the extremists to liberate Marawi City, displacing thousands of families residing in the war-torn city.

Licuanan said that just the like the Department of Education (DepEd), CHED is also willing to issue a directive to HEIs asking them to assist and accommodate displaced students should they choose to transfer to their respective institutions. "This is not a burden that we impose on the universities, it is an assistance that they must provide during times of crisis".

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