Press Release
December 11, 2023


The Senate on Monday (Dec. 11) passed on third and final reading two-education related measures sponsored by Sen. Chiz Escudero, which would waive the college entrance examination fees of deserving students and amend the land use development law covering state universities and colleges (SUCs).

The two measures are Senate Bill No. 2441, which mandates private Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) to waive entrance examination fees and charges of qualified students applying for college admission; and Senate Bill 1470, which seeks to amend Republic Act 11396 or the "State Universities and Colleges (SUCs) Land Use Development and Infrastructure Plan (LUDIP) Act."

To be known as the "Free College Entrance Act," SB 2441 will enable thousands of poor yet deserving young Filipinos the opportunity to get a college degree and have a brighter future, said Escudero, chair of the Committee on Higher, Technical and Vocational Education.

SB 2441 requires HEIs to waive their college entrance examination fees to graduating high school students with the following qualifications:

  • Must be a natural-born Filipino citizen;

  • Must belong to the top 10% of his or her graduating class; and

  • Must belong to a family whose combined household income falls below the poverty threshold as defined by the National Economic and Development Authority.

SB 2441 authorizes the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) to determine and impose appropriate sanctions against non-complying private HEIs.

Meanwhile, SB 1470 aims to further strengthen the mechanism for land use development and infrastructure planning and budgeting for SUCs.

Under the bill, SUCs shall be required to prepare and implement a LUDIP designed to improve and optimize their resources. All land use and priority infrastructure projects to be implemented by the SUCs within five years shall be included in their LUDIP.

Once the bill is enacted into law, the government would appropriate P25 billion for the next five years for the implementation of the land use and infrastructure projects included in the comprehensive LUDIP.

"This blueprint can be an SUC's syllabus for progress. By identifying key result areas, priorities are set, resources are channeled to where they can be most impactful, and progress is measured," Escudero said.

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