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City college bill approved, but lawmakers want more review

The City Council approved the ordinance certified as urgent by Mayor Sara Duterte to build a public college to serve the poor students.

“I hereby certify to the urgency and necessity of a resolution and ordinance to be passed under the Suspended Rules during the regular session of the 19th City Council on January 7, 2020 with the title: An Ordinance Establishing the City College of Davao (CCD), Defining its Mandate and Appropriating Funds Thereof,” she wrote.

Councilor Pilar Braga, committee chair on education, science and technology, arts and culture, sponsored the resolution in compliance with the mayor’s urgent request.

“The mayor gave the certificate of urgency, naturally we have to comply with the mayor’s request. That’s why I passed a resolution for the creation of a city college,” the councilor said.

Councilors Danilo Dayanghirang and Diosdado Mahipu co-sponsored the said resolution.

However, the ordinance was deferred for the next regular session on Jan. 14 for deliberation.

“It was too soon, we haven’t even prepared because we received this certificate of urgency right then and then, that’s why I suggested to defer the ordinance, but just the ordinance, for discussion,” she said.

“Of course we have to discuss it thoroughly so that we can effectively implement the city college,” she said.

Initial processing is already underway, as the timetable for the implementation and operation of the city college is due in July 2020.
“This must be prioritized, as this is really urgent upon the request of the mayor,” she said.

“The process is also long, we have to comply with the requirements of CHED (Commission on Higher Education). The site of the infrastructure, the personnel, facilities and all other matter that a school must have shall be approved by CHED,” she added.

She also said that the mayor knows where to source the funds.
Braga also bared that the city college can cater to 1,000 students initially, and is limited to Davaoeños only. Qualified students are those who can’t afford to go to college and members of the indigenous communities. “They are our top priorities,” she said.

The initial site of the infrastructure will be at the Alternative Learning System (ALS) site around the Teodoro Palma Gil Elementary School in Quirino, where a series of government-owned buildings currently stand. Braga said the buildings will be used as a temporary city college so it can start operating.

“This is for temporary purposes only, as what I’ve said, there is a time constraint. We are envisioning a world-class city college, and soon we will be constructing it. We just have to prepare and organize things, and we will look for a nice site,” she said.

The city will also shoulder the tuition, books, and allowance of the beneficiaries. General courses will be offered, but there are still no details for now.

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