Senator Alan Peter Cayetano on Wednesday urged the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) to give funds to the Department of Education (DepEd) for the printing and issuance of certificates for students who have finished technical-vocational courses in senior high school so they can actually find work after graduation.
“Ang promise noon[g ginagawa pa lang ang K-12], the TESDA certification will be passed to the DepEd kasi DepEd doesn’t have the money to buy the equipment but TESDA does have that. And somehow hindi natupad,” Cayetano said during the second briefing of the Development Budget Coordination Committee (DBCC) at the Senate on the proposed National Budget for 2024.
The independent senator said since the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) gets a budget increase of P1 billion every fiscal year, part of the amount could be given to DepEd for the purpose.
“Maybe this year ilipat natin y’ung 1 billion pang-certification,” he told the DBCC and fellow lawmakers.
Senator Win Gatchalian, chairperson of the Senate Committee on Basic Education, Arts and Culture, and Senator Juan Edgardo Angara, chairperson of the Senate Committee on Finance, both agreed with Cayetano.
Angara said DepEd has never had funding for the certification of vocational graduates ever since the K-12 curriculum was implemented.
“We gave our graduates that false promise that they will find work, but the truth is that they will not unless they have that certification,” he said.
Cayetano urged the DBM to increase the budget limit for DepEd to accommodate this and other necessities, in the same way the budget cap for the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) is being increased.
“Kung tataasan lang din naman natin ang cap ng DPWH, taasan na rin natin ang cap ng DepEd,” he told the DBCC.
Cayetano said he will also take the matter up once the budget briefing with DepEd comes.