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Binay vows to liberalize scholarship grants

Opposition chieftain Vice President Jejomar Binay vowed to liberalize the granting of government-funded scholarships to students if and when he becomes the next Chief Executive.

“We will not allow the scholarships exclusively allotted for nominees of politicians,” the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) party standard-bearer yesterday said during the K-12 Symposium in Hinangunan, Southern Leyte.

Binay promised to tweak student loans and grants under the Government Assistance to Students and Teachers in Private Education (GASTPE) law so that more beneficiaries may be accommodated.

“For students in private schools, the student loans and grants program under the GASTPE Law…will be expanded so that more students can attend school. In the collegiate and vocational-technical levels, scholarships and grants will also be increased,” he said.

For transparency, Binay will see to it that the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) and the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) announce the opening of these grants and scholarships to the general public.

Binay will vie for the Palace seat in the 2016 national elections.

While Binay hasn’t knocked on the Aquino administration’s K-12 program that much, he says that it could definitely be improved.

In order to complement it, Binay told the symposium that his administration would ensure free basic education for children attending public schools.

The former Makati City mayor also promised to establish a consistent feeding program for the pupils, noting that proper nutrition and education go hand-in-hand.

“We may not be able give free uniforms to the millions of elementary students in the country – just like we do in Makati – but we will endeavor to feed the undernourished children. We will partner with agencies and private institutions to improve the nutrition of children in our schools,” he said. (Ellson Quismorio)