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Tuesday, March 24, 2009


Sen. Chiz Escudero said that the long white line of nurses seeking employment can be shortened if the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) focuses on improving the quality of nursing education instead of increasing the course to five years.

“I am against adding another year for nursing, or for any other course,” the senator said in a radio interview in Cauayan, Isabela.

“Our nurses are being praised all over the world. Why in the world does CHED want to change what is not broken?,” he asked.

Escudero said the CHED should instead weed out diploma mills that have proliferated due to the increase in the number of students wanting to take up nursing. He also called for stricter supervision of nursing review centers.

Echoing the call of the Catholic Educational Association of the Philippines and the Coordinating Council of Private Educational Associations against the CHED plan, Escudero said making nursing a five-year course would mean an additional financial burden to parents and students.
“Parents set aside a budget for the education of their children. Based on current figures each nursing student needs about P100,000 annually for matriculation plus textbooks, excluding review courses. Adding another year to the course makes it more expensive,” the senator pointed out.

At the same time, Escudero also called for a moratorium on tuition, miscellaneous and other fees, noting that most nursing colleges also have compulsory in-house review courses that are paid for separately by students.

Meanwhile, based on a report done by CHED and the Professional Regulatory Commission, only 12 out of the top 175 nursing schools in the country had a passing rate of 90% or higher during the period 2000-2004.

In the 1970s & 1980s, the passing average for the Nursing Licensure Exam was 80-90%. But in 2008, only 44.51%, or 39,455 out of 88,649 examinees, passed.

“The nursing profession in the Philippines has yet to recover from the 2006 leakage case. This is a symptom of the long-standing deterioration of our nursing education. The CHED must not focus on facilitating the commercialization of the profession and instead make it less difficult for those wanting to take it up,” Escudero said. ##

Press Statement


We should avoid any trial by publicity here and just let the wheel of justice take its course. I hope that Mancao is out to tell the truth and to obtain justice for the families of the victims, and is not party to a plot to discredit and break-up the opposition.

I cannot blame anyone for casting doubts on this latest episode in this celebrated case because of the timing and the way it is being managed by the administration.


I oppose any proposal to impose new taxes. In these times of economic hardship, another tax burden is the last thing we need.

The proposed tax on text messages will ultimately be shouldered by the people who use the services of telecommunication companies.

Ang taumbayan ang talo dito dahil ipapasa lang ng mga kumpanya ang gastos nito sa buwis.

Instead of imposing new taxes, I urge the government work with the private sector in crafting solutions that will help everyone ride out the crisis.

Dapat magtulungan ang gobyerno at pribadong sektor dahil lahat tayo ay apektado ng krisis.


Senator Chiz Escudero on Friday called on the government to initiate moves for all-party talks among the six claimant countries to ease tensions generated by recent developments on the disputed Spratlys group of islands in the South China Sea.

“The Philippines should take the lead in calming the brewing storm with China triggered by the passage of the Baselines Law,” he said in a statement.

Escudero was responding to reports that China plans to send more patrol ships to handle fresh “challenges and complications” in the disputed chain of islands, reefs, and islets believed to be rich in oil and other mineral resources.

The senator said the six-party talks on North Korea can serve as a model to ensure that diplomacy continues to be the main arena in resolving the territorial dispute among China, the Philippines, Vietnam, Taiwan, Malaysia, and Brunei.

“We need not reinvent the wheel. All we need to have is the will to work out a settlement that would be acceptable to all claimants,” he said.

Escudero met late Wednesday with the new Chinese envoy to Manila, Liu Jianchao, who assured him that Beijing remains committed to resolving the dispute in the Spratlys through dialogue.

“We agreed that any issue or conflict must be resolved through peaceful and diplomatic avenues as stipulated in the ASEAN Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea,” the senator said.

During the three-hour meeting on Wednesday night, the senator said the Chinese envoy agreed that the Philippines and China should continue to strengthen ties and look for more areas of cooperation in the social, political, and economic fields.

“We both expressed confidence that relations between the two countries will be strengthened and improved because of the friendship between our countries and peoples,” the senator added.

Escudero also said he has accepted the Chinese envoy’s invitation to visit China during the Senate’s summer recess. The senator has previously visited Australia and Taiwan on the invitation of their governments.

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