Filipino students walk out of classes, demand greater education subsidy

Posted: August 17, 2010 in Non-automotive News
Tags: , , ,

N.B. This article was originally published in Asian Correspondent on July 16, 2010. Visit the original post here.

During the class evaluation, the class appreciated the pictures that complemented the story. The article was judged as having good grammar and syntax.

As pointed out by the class, this article lacked the side of the government. This story could have been improved the inclusion of comments or reactions from the government officials targeted in the protest.

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Students from various schools and universities traded the four corners of their classrooms for the streets Friday to join the National Youth Walkout and appeal for more government support for the education sector.

Hundreds of high school, college, and even out-of-school youth marched from the University of Santo Tomas to historic Mendiola to voice out their protests regarding the poor education system in the country.

“This walkout clearly shows the disgust of the students with the current education system and other forms of injustice,” said Terry Ridon, national chairperson of the League of Filipino Students (LFS). “Because of the strong disgust toward the situation, the students have decided that protesting on the streets is more important than attending their classes.”

In recent years, inadequate budget have led state universities and colleges (SUCs) to implement tuition increases. The Polytechnic University of the Philippines (PUP), the country’s biggest state university, almost implemented a 2,000-percent tuition hike before it was blocked by student protests. In the University of the Philippines (UP), the Tuition and Other Fees Increase (TOFI) passed by the UP regents in 2006 raised tuition by 300-percent.

“This is more than just a call for higher state subsidy and rollback of tuition. This is also a challenge to the new administration which promised change. Ten days before the State of the Nation Address, we will monitor what his [President Aquino] plans are for the education sector,” Absie Eligio of Student Alliance for the Advancement of Democratic Rights in UP-CMC (STAND-UP-CMC) said.

Aside from concerns on education, the students also demanded justice for the extrajudicial killings committed since President Aquino came into power; in a span of just seven days, five activists have been slain.

Eligio said that Filipinos should not be complacent with having a new president. Ridon agreed: “This new administration creates an illusion on the issue of genuine change. The challenge for the youth is to be critical [in examining issues]. We should not be swayed by the idea that Noynoy [Aquino] can’t do anything bad. Maybe he is righteous. But if he will not fulfill the demands to increase the budget and regulate tuition, then he will be no different from Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.”

Students Walkout Students Walkout
Students march along Espana Ave. Students Walkout
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