Press Release
January 19, 2018

Sen. Bam to DepEd: Ensure graduates' employability, don't ignore employers

Senator Bam Aquino urges the Department of Education to strengthen academic-industry linkages and make sure K-to-12 graduates are ready to enter the workforce.

"Student readiness to enter the workforce is a serious issue that is better addressed by developing strong relationships between schools and companies, what we call academic-industry linkages," said Sen. Bam.

"Huwag natin balewalain ang kinabukasan ng mga K-to-12 graduates. Mahalagang makonsulta ang

employers at mga kinatawan ng industriya upang matiyak na handa nang magtrabaho ang K-to-12 graduates," Sen. Bam added.

Sen. Bam issued the reaction after Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) expressed concern over the lack of minimum on-the-job training requirements among the first batch of K-to-12 students.

The PCCI said the first batch of K-to-12 students only have 80 hours or two weeks of OJT experience, making them unqualified for available jobs.

"The Department of Education and the Commission on Higher Education should have dynamic curriculum that can address concerns of current and future employers," said Sen. Bam.

The senator also called on concerned government agencies to come up with a process that will regularly assess education curriculum vis-a-vis necessary skills needed for jobs

As former chairman of the Senate Committee on Education in the 17th Congress, Sen. Bam filed Senate Bill No. 1278 or Trabaho Centers in Schools Act, which seeks to establish job placement offices in public high schools and state universities and colleges (SUCs).

The measure mandates the establishment of a Trabaho Center in every public high school and SUC with main services that include: 1) Industry Matching, 2) Career Counseling, and 3) Employment Facilitation.

Trabaho Centers should address the skills mismatch and ensure employability of students upon graduation by using feedback from employers to better develop the school's curriculum and training programs.

Sen. Bam is also the principal sponsor of the Universal Access to Quality Tertiary Education Act, making college tuition and miscellaneous fees free in public universities, colleges and TESDA-run technical-vocational institutions.

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