Fund for Assistance to Private Education

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The Private Education Assistance Committee - Fund for Assistance to Private Education (PEAC-FAPE, FAPE) is an organization tasked to promote the development of private education in the Philippines.

Contents

History

FAPE had its roots in the Foundation for Private Education in the Philippines (FPEP) founded in 1964. Backed by the Coordinating Council of Private Educational Associations and led by Rev. Fr. Pacifico A. Ortiz, the FPEP was tasked with the management of the private education sector's P24 million share in the War Damage Special Fund for Education. The fund itself came from the surplus funds authorized by the War Damage Act of 1962.

With the goal of supporting and assisting private educational institutions, the FPEP undertook projects such as “Operation Blueprint,” a pilot survey of ten colleges and universities in Metro Manila, and “A National Program for Upgrading Private Education in the Philippines,” which would be later on adapted into the Government Assistance to Private Education (GAPE) plan of the Department of Education. Other projects included strengthening graduate schools, awarding grants, and creating a pension program for retiring personnel.

FAPE was then formally created by former President Ferdinand E. Marcos on November 5, 1968, with the Private Education Assistance Committee (PEAC) as its trustee. Programs from the FPEP days were carried over, such as the Private Education Retirement Annuity Association (PERAA) from the old FPEP pension program. PERAA is now an independent agency, but has remained a FAPE affiliate.

FAPE also played a part in the development of the first National College Entrance Examination (NCEE). This led to the establishment of the Center for Educational Measurement (CEM), an independent testing agency. It is currently one of the largest in the country, administering exams to around 200,000 students every year, including the National Medical Admission Test (NMAT).

The organization was also pivotal in the establishment of the Federation of Accrediting Agencies of the Philippines (FAAP), which brought together three private school accreditation agencies - the Philippine Accrediting Agency for Schools, Colleges and Universities (PAASCU), the Philippine Association of Colleges and Universities - Commission on Accreditation (PACU-COA), and the Association of Christian Schools and Colleges Accrediting Association (ACSC-AA). The FAAP, however, was made into a separate agency in 1988.

In the late 1990s, FAPE was embroiled in controversy. It had posted a decline in revenue (from P32 million in 1991 to P20 million in 1998) and rising expenses (from P20 million to P46 million in the same period); the fund almost went under. An ad-hoc committee, composed of then Education Secretary Bro. Andrew Gonzales, Dr. Armand Fabella, and Wellington Yu, was formed to investigate FAPE's deteriorating finances. With a report from Joaquin Cunanan & Co. written in July 1999, the ad hoc committee discovered several anomalies and suspicious transactions from 1991 to 1998, including the unauthorized release of funds to the John B. Lacson Colleges Foundation (JBLCF).

However, the fund has been fully restored and conservatively invested in government securities under an investment management agreement with the Landbank of the Philippines. FAPE was then made into the secretariat of the PEAC.

Programs

Educational Service Contracting and Library Development

Under the Educational Service Contracting program, students who cannot be accommodated by public schools are instead sent to private schools, with the government shouldering the cost of tuition and miscellaneous fees. One million students have already benefited from this program, which has now been running for ten years.

ESC participating schools, meanwhile, will be aided by FAPE in updating their libraries through assisting them in the purchase of up-to-date reference books for all year levels. The money used to purchase these books shall come from a service fee that FAPE charges for the management of the ESC project.

Faculty Development Programs: Graduate Education Program, Post Graduate Scholarship Program, Thesis Dissertation and Assistance Program, College Faculty Development Fund

All these programs under FAPE are geared for teachers who want to pursue further education but do not currently have the means to do so.

The Graduate Education Program, started in the 1970s, offer scholarships for teachers in private institutions to take up postgraduate studies in other FAPE affiliated private schools; on the other hand, the Post Graduate Scholarship Program is for overseas scholarships.

The five-year College Faculty Development Fund program, however, is only managed by FAPE for the Commission on Higher Education (CHED). The fund offers fellowship grants for selected degrees in graduate schools that have been designated as Centers of Excellence.

The Thesis Dissertation and Assistance Program, meanwhile, offers financial aid and other institutional linkages for teachers who are currently taking postgraduate degrees.

Evaluation of Graduate Education Program (EGEP)

FAPE was also commissioned by CHED to manage the EGEP, a survey of graduate schools in the Philippines.

The survey discovered that only two private universities and three well-funded state colleges and universities have specialized funds and incentive program for research, making research a weak field in postgraduate studies in the Philippines. Only ten universities across the country were able to meet the standards set in the survey.

The specifics of the survey, however, are still kept confidential by CHED as survey results were used to designate Centers for Excellence and Centers for Development in schools across the country.

FAPE Online Databank System

The FAPE Online Databank System, currently in development, aims to serve as the source of the latest and most accurate information on private schools. The database, which shall be managed exclusively by FAPE, shall contain information such as the average tuition fees for schools or the average salary of teachers across the Philippines.

Information shall be made freely accessible to schools which have participated in the project, as well as lawmakers, private educational associations, researchers and the like. A database for public schools is also planned.

References

Citation

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