Thursday, 12 February 2009

CHED to embark on P4B for faculty development program


MANILA (PNA) –- Commission on Higher Education (CHED) chairman Dr. Emmanuel Angeles on Thursday said they are set to embark on a massive P4-billion faculty development program designed to improve the quality of teaching in higher education institutions (HEI) nationwide.

Angeles said the program, which will also cover college and university presidents, senior administrators and deans, will be spread out over a period of four years starting this year.

“Not everyone has the chance to study in prestigious local and foreign universities such as Harvard so we decided to implement the expanded faculty development program to update the skills of our faculty,” he said.

The expanded program, Angeles said, is designed to accommodate an additional 2,000 faculty-scholars per year until 2013.

“At an average of P1 million per scholar, this target will require P500 on an annual basis or P2 billion in four years,” he said.

At present, CHED said it can only accommodate a small number of teachers for scholarship programs or graduate degrees due to lack of funding.

At least 2,000 faculty members of various HEI pursuing Masters and PhD in priority discipline have availed of the “Ongoing Faculty Development Program and the PGMA Science and Engineering Graduate Scholarship.”

But Angeles explained the current program is not enough to enable CHED to fully meet its target under the “New Philippine Education Highway” that would see the implementation of much-needed reforms and the infusion of additional resources to boost basic and tertiary education.

“The percentage of faculty with graduate degrees has increased largely as a result of the faculty development program but this must be further improved considering that the requirement is for all faculty teaching college subjects to have at least a masters degree,” he added.

At present, only 33 percent of college and university faculty members have masteral or doctoral degrees when the minimum requirement should be at least 55 percent.

Aside from this, close to 70 percent of the faculty are not in full-time status.

Presidents, senior management administrators and deans of HEIs will be made to undergo an “Executive Management Development Program” to upgrade their managerial skills, the CHED chief said.

“The program for presidents and senior administrators will develop and enhance their capabilities in organization management and development, quality assurance, human resource management, management information system, financial management and resource generation,” Angeles added.

The program will be implemented starting school-year 2009-2010.

Faculty development is one of the four main thrusts unveiled by CHED to improve the quality of Philippine higher education.

Others are strengthening the HEI’s research and development capability, facilities development and upgrading and additional scholarship slots for poor yet deserving students. (PNA)

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