Thursday, October 12, 2006

Manifesto of Unity Against the UP System-Wide Tuition Increase

We, the Iskolars ng Bayan, from different student organizations, student formations, fraternities, sororities, student publications and student councils in UP Manila, wholeheartedly declare and manifest that:

  1. We believe that education is a right and not a privilege. Education must be accessible to the greatest number of Filipino youth. It must be provided by the state to the youth and the people, as it is constitutionally-bound to do.
  2. We oppose, in general, the intensifying commercialization of education - the selling of education as a commodity – which makes education a right of a few who can pay and not the right of every Filipino.
  3. We oppose, in particular, the following forms of commercialization of education in UP Manila:

v The proposed tuition fee increase in all undergraduate level courses of the University from P250/unit to P1000/unit

v The tuition fee increase in the UP College of Medicine from P P11, 529.50 to P20, 045.50

v The library fee increase for freshman students from P400 to P800, and freshman medicine students (Year Level III) from P800 to P1200

v The proposed laboratory fee increases in the College of Arts and Sciences

  1. We shall enjoin the broadest number of Iskolars ng Bayan to participate in fighting for our right to education through various forms of action such as launching widespread and sustained education campaign drives on the right to education and the intensifying commercialization of education.
  2. We shall translate this unity in principle into collective and creative action. We shall call the attention of the public, the UP Administration and the government to its advocacies.
  3. Finally, we believe that the fight against the commercialization of UP education does not end in opposing increases in tuition and other fees. We shall, therefore, continue the fight for greater state subsidy for UP, in particular, and education, in general.

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