With 251 votes, the House of Representatives approved on 3rd and final reading House Bill 9015 which would give undergraduate-professionals a chance to earn a bachelor’s degree.
The bill institutionalizes the Expanded Tertiary Education Equivalency and Accreditation Program (ETEEAP).
"The ETEEAP refers to the alternative education program in the Philippines that allows working professionals who were either unable to finish their college education or were completely unable to advance into college for different reasons to earn a bachelor’s degree without going through the traditional schooling method," House Speaker Ferdinand Martin G. Romualdez said in a statement.
The House Speaker's office said that the bill aims to strengthen the system of academic equivalency and accreditation at the college level, including the validation of the knowledge and expertise derived by senior high school graduates, post-secondary technical-vocational graduates, and college undergraduate students from relevant work experiences and high-level, nonformal training in order to harness their full potentials.
It said that the knowledge, experiences, achievements, and skills obtained by the undergraduates through their jobs shall be used to earn school credits that are then deducted from the total number of units or credits that they are required to earn before they graduate.
The bill spells out the following requirements for applicants to qualify: the applicant must be a Filipino citizen, at least 23 years of age, with at least five years work experience, and must submit the following documentary requirements: (a) duly-accomplished ETEEAP Application form; (b) certification of having passed the Accreditation and Equivalency Assessment conducted by the DepEd; (c) employment certificates; (d) birth certificate issued by the Philippine Statistics Authority; (e) resume, curriculum vitae, or personal data sheet; (f) service record or employment certificate signed by the employer; (g) job description signed by the employer; and (h) transcript of records.
The bill vests the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) with additional powers as the lead agency in the implementation of the provisions of the proposed law.