QUEZON City Rep. Alfred Vargas supports the decision of the Commission on Higher Education (CHEd) to expanding the coverage of regulations on field trips to include all off-campus activities, including on-the-job training (OJT)
QUEZON City Rep. Alfred Vargas supports the decision of the Commission on Higher Education (CHEd) to expanding the coverage of regulations on field trips to include all off-campus activities, including on-the-job training (OJT).
“It’s about time, Filipino students and their families deserve to have peace of mind as students learn in many different ways,” Vargas said.
Aside from the CHED, the new guidelines was drafted in coordination with the
Land Transportation Office(LTO), Land Transport Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) and Department of Tourism (DoT).
Vargas underscored the need to include other concerned government agencies in ensuring the safety of the students during fieldtrips of other educational tours.
“The involvement of other agencies is better for the regulation of the accountability of schools and bus operators,” Vargas said.
The CHED is expected to release the new guidelines by June.
The agencies had decided to include in particular OJTs “because of the safety aspect,” noting that some programs in colleges and universities required students to write their thesis while out in the field.
It can be recalled that 15 students of Bestlink College, with address in Fairview, Quezon City, died after their bus crashed into an electric post on Magnetic Hill in Tanay on Feb. 20.
Some of the survivors, mostly constituents of Vargas in the 5th District of Quezon City, filed a P10 million damage suit against bus operators Panda Coach Tourist and Transport Inc., and Haranah Tours Corp.
Following the fatal accident, the solon has filed House Resolution 809 directing the appropriate committees to investigate, in aid of legislation, the involvement of Panda Coach Tours and Transport and the Bestlink College in the road accident, for the purpose of preventing tragic road accidents.
The resolution is still pending with the House committees on higher education and transportation.
Vargas wants government agencies to ensure the people responsible for the accident are held accountable.
Meanwhile, Vargas is also the proponent of House Bill 5480 or the National Transportation Safety Board which main purpose is create the National Transporttion Safety Board, a non-regulatory entity tasked to determine the probable cause of transportation –related accidents on land, sea and air, including railway and pipeline systems.
Vargas said this tragic accident has once again opened a lot of unsolved issues regarding many of the Philippines’ safety laws on fieldtrips, school-related activities done outside campus and other tours.
-News Release May 29, 2017