UPLB students start classes with protest vs pending USC chair proclamation, educ crisis

June 13, 2012


Class opening at the University of the Philippines Los Banos was welcomed with a rally today demanding for the immediate proclamation of University Student Council-UPLB (USC-UPLB) Chairperson-elect Ynik Ante and “challenging Iskolars ng Bayan to respond on ‘education crisis’ aggravated by continuous cutbacks on education budget.”

Some 300 UPLB students led by Kabataan Party-list Southern Tagalog began distributing their flyers on the annual breakfast treat to the university’s freshman students, followed by a program at the College of Arts and Sciences steps and a protest march from UPLB to Junction, Los Banos, Laguna.

Ante’s proclamation is still pending after the electoral board’s attempt to bar her from running in the campus election and from assuming her post due to late payment of tuition. The university’s chancellor, however, has already expressed his endorsement of Ante’s proclamation amid students’ continuing support on the latter.

“The prevention of Ante’s proclamation as the legal and legitimate USC-UPLB chair is a disrespect of both the integrity of the election process and the students’ decision,” said Ma. Cristina Madeja, chairperson of the party-alliance Samahan ng Kabataan para sa Bayan (SAKBAYAN), UP’s widest student alliance of 60 student organizations. Ante was SAKBAYAN’s standard bearer for the UPLB student council elections on February.

“The intervention on the students’ activity is part of the long history of campus repression in UPLB,” Madeja continued referring to the then Office of Student Affairs Director Vivian Gonzales, a reserved colonel, as the one behind the pending proclamation of Ante. “(Gonzales) is the culprit of various repressive policies, such as tambayan phaseout, suspension of organization’s officers, intervention on internal operations of student council and publications and non-proclamation of winners in student council elections,” she pointed out.

Ante stressed that ‘campus repression’ happens because there are UPLB constituents, like SAKBAYAN that are “conscious and brave enough to stand against policies that trample our right to a quality and accessible education.”

“We welcome the freshman students with the warmest salutation as the new iskolar ng bayan. Our mass action today aims to educate and inform them of their constitutionally-guaranteed right to education, democratic right to freely express their sentiments, freely assemble and freely organize,” Ante said.

The same students also protest various schemes of tuition hike, such as UP’s Socialized Tuition and Financial Assistance Program that requires students to pay P1,500 per unit, amounting to a 50 percent tuition hike. They slam Mr. Benigno Aquino III’s budget cut on education and other social services that left UP with almost P13-billion budget deficit.

“Amidst Aquino government’s futility to prioritize education in the national budget allocation, we pledge a more serious campaign to lobby in congress and protest for higher state subsidy on education and other basic social services,” Ante said.

Madeja said that the protest today is the commencement of a series of activities that will culminate in their participation in the “people’s state of the nation address (SONA)” along with Aquino’s on July 23. #


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On K to 12 first week: Southern Tagalog youth groups launch ‘K-12 Watch’ in Los Baños

June 11, 2012

Led by Kabataan Party-list, youth groups launch “K-12 Watch” in Southern Tagalog schools today as they claim that “(K to 12) has wreak havoc in elementary and high schools after a week of implementation.”

The groups affiliated with Kabataan Party-list, League of Filipino Students-UPLB, Anakbayan-Southern Tagalog and Gabriela Youth-UPLB aims to gather starting today feedbacks through a “K-12 Watch Roving Bulletin Board” at Lopez Elementary School in Los Banos, Laguna where parents, pupils, teachers and other concerned post their feedback on the first week of implementation of the K-12 policy.

They also invited high school students, parents and teachers in their “iPose against K-12” photo booth at Los Baños National High School main campus where they pose for a photo with the “No to K-12” thought bubble placards. The group said they will upload the photos on the No to K-12 Alliance Facebook page.

Meanwhile, they launched in Southern Tagalog a more serious signature campaign for the “1.2 million signatures against K-12” campaign. Allen Lemence, spokesperson of LFS-UPLB, said that they will submit the said signature campaign to the House of Representatives through its youth solon Raymond Palatino of Kabataan Partylist.

“We are receiving reports that K to 12 caused heavy burdens to the pupils and students and their parents as well as to the teachers and school administrators. Now, we would like to formalize that into a campaign to finally oppose and call for the junking of the K to 12 program,” Lemence said.

The groups received information that K to 12 has caused confusion among the teachers as to what to teach on the new curriculum. Meanwhile, they also received feedback from parents that they were convinced that the K to 12 program will only give them heavy expenses.

He also stressed that their activities today are just the start of a series of activities that would tackle the worsening state of education and the youth in the region and how they reflect the national situation under the administration of Pres. Benigno Simeon Aquino III.

The group aims to encourage the participation of students, parents, educators, and other concerned parties in open discussions on the status of the first week of implementation of the K-12 curriculum in both elementary and secondary schools in Southern Tagalog to reaffirm the group’s stand against the policy.

“We stressed that this K to 12 program is a pro-imperialist and anti-people policy. The questions to be asked should not only ‘are we ready?’ or ‘how can we make K to 12 work?’ But rather we should question and expose the reason behind its implementation—that this program is yet another manifestation of Aquino’s puppetry to the foreign multi-national corporations,” Lemence pointed out as he also stressed that the K to 12 program is not an education policy per se but a labor export policy.

 

7:00 AM – 11:30 AM

K-12 Watch Roving Bulletin Board (Lopez Elementary School, Lopez Ave., Los Baños, Laguna)

11:30 AM – 2:30 PM

iPose against K-12 Photo Booth

Los Baños National High School, Batong Malake, Los Baños, Laguna

 

RELATED ACTIVITIES:

June 12    Independence Day mobilization

June 13    UP Los Baños class opening mobilization

June 19    Kabataan Partylist anniversary voters’ registration and education campaign | Rizal Day celebration

July 4       Filipino-American Friendship Day mobilization

July 7       State of the Youth Address – Laguna

July 14     State of the Youth Address – Quezon

July 15     State of the Youth Address – Cavite

July 18     State of the Youth Address – Romblon

July 21     State of the Youth Address – Batangas


STRIKE BACK!: Defend our right to education

AQUINO, FOUL OUT!

Amid university strikes that spawned a nation-wide protest against education budget cuts last year, President Benigno Aquino III is hell bent this year in allocating sufficient budget for basic social services. He was so determined in abandoning what is socially incontestable right of the people for free and quality education, among other social services that have to be any government’s top priority. Hence, a new round of budget cuts.

Worse, his communications team are throwing the most unbecoming comments towards the students, teachers and school officials who joined the protests such as Abigail Valte who undermined the protesters’ capability to engage in protests intelligently, not only to make their way for a 30-second airtime on the television news program but to show broad and united collectivism of tens of thousands of protesters to demand what is rightfully theirs—right to education. It is this inalienable right that shook the students’ chairs in schools, reminded them of their social obligation outside the four walls of the universities and pushed them to take the militant—unwavering and uncompromising—form of action such as long marches, snake rallies, walkout and strikes. Students were clever, too, in utilizing newer forms of protest—i.e., “pose to oppose budget cuts” in Facebook, mass planking and freeze mob—to send their message through various channels.

Aquino, lest he forgets, pleaded in June 30, 2010 in front of the people—his “bosses”—for participation in nation-building. We participated through various means. He has no right to lounge in the reins of authority if he remains deaf of the aspirations of the people for sufficient state subsidy.

 

STUDENTS REBOUND!

UPLB strikes back on Sept 23, 2011. Photo courtesy of Arkibong Bayan (http://arkibongbayan.org/2011/2011-09Sept23-uplb/uplbvsbcut.htm)

We pledged for strikes and we them a history. The whole world witnessed once again that our activism is alive, that the youth is not swallowed by individualism and self-delusion, that we can see ourselves altogether in one fight.

The strikes can never be taken as token protests that are easily belittled and sandwiched between State illusions of progress. The strikes can never stun our political imagination. These will be constantly remembered, relived and intensified so long as our fundamental rights are trampled upon and disrespected by those who are sanctioned to protect and uphold them.

 

FAST BREAK FOR SUFFICIENT STATE SUBSIDY!

Almost 10,000 student,s teachers, school officials and parents marched to Mendiola on September 23, 2011. Photo courtesy of Arkibong Bayan (http://arkibongbayan.org/2011/2011-09Sept23-uplb/uplbvsbcut.htm)

On Oct. 4 to 6, the Senate will convene to deliberate the budget for state universities and colleges (SUCs). In the midst of lower state funding for SUC not to mention a meager allocation relative to Philippine Association of SUCs’ proposed budget, this is high time to remind our legislators of the strength of our collective action. May the strikes serve as both a challenge and a warning.

Thus, our challenges to the Aquino administration:

1. Re-channel the budget for debt servicing, military spending, dole-outs and pork barrel including the “crocodile” Presidential fund to education and other basic social services like health and housing;

2. Stop the cutbacks on State funding on basic social services, pass a P45-billion budget for SUCs, as proposed by PASUC; and

3. Implement a five-year freeze on tuition increase, rollback unjust and skyrocketing tuition such as the 300% increase in UP and junk all redundant, questionable and unnecessary exorbitant fees as necessary, beneficial and practicable means for immediate economic relief especially after the devastation brought about by the typhoons Pedring and Quiel.

And thus, our warning: intensified and sustained campus occupations and operation stoppage if the Aquino government remains deaf of our just call for sufficient State funding for social services—hundreds of thousands marching to Mendiola, to Batasan, to EDSA, clapping and shouting and acting for genuine social change.

 

STRIKE BACK AGAINST BUDGET CUTS!

FIGHT FOR A PRO-PEOPLE NATIONAL BUDGET!

ASSERT FOR SUFFICIENT STATE SUBSIDY

on education and other basic social services!

 

10.04.11            4pm, humsteps, UP Los Banos

10am, Day of action, Senate

 

 

SAVE OUR EDUCATION MOVEMENT

PRIMARY CONVENORS:

ANAKBAYAN-SOUTHERN TAGALOG | COLLEGE EDITORS’GUILD OF THE PHILIPPINES-SOUTHERN TAGALOG | NATIONAL UNION OF STUDENTS OF THE PHILIPPINES-SOUTHERN TAGALOG | KABATAAN PARTYLIST-SOUTHERN TAGALOG | SOUTHERN TAGALOG CULTURAL NETWORK | SAMAHAN NG KABATAAN PARA SA BAYAN (SAKBAYAN) | KULTURAN UGNAYAN NG KABATAAN ALY SA BAYAN | KATIPUNAN NG SANGGUNIANG MAG-AARAL SA UP-UPLB | ALL UP WORKERS’UNION  and almost 50 student councils and publications in Southern Tagalog


‘Planking’ issue later, higher social service budget now—advocates

During a rally in UPLB, varsity players and students 'planked' and formed the words "UP FIGHT" to call for higher state funding to UP and education sector.

The Anti-planking bill received criticisms from anti-budget cut campaigners as they claim that the legislation is very untimely because it diverts the public from focusing and participating in campaigning against budget cuts on social services including education, mentioning as well that the bill is unconstitutional.

Save Our Education Movement, a Southern Tagalong region-based multi-sectoral alliance against budget cut, was dismayed when Quezon City Second District Rep. Winnie Castelo filed an Anti-Planking bill in Congress today. In an interview, Save Our Education Movement Spokesperson Allen Lemence said that Castelo should focus first on the issue at hand, instead of pursuing for the said bill, which he claimed as a violation of the constitutionally-guaranteed right to freedom of expression.

“To some, the planking may not be attractive. But to us, it is one of the youth’s way of expressing their protests,” Lemence said. “So instead of curtailing our right to freely express our grievances, Most Honorable Castelo should join us in calling for higher state subsidy for education. It may not be through planking but through using his wit and his position [as congressman] to urge his fellow legislators to approve higher state subsidy for education,” he continued.

Lemence promoted the planking along with other creative activities of the youth and students to protest against budget cuts on social services and call for higher state subsidy on education and other services. Lemence cited as an example the “Malikmata” art exhibit of the Kartunista-Manunulat Kolektib that is being held today in University of the Philippines Los Banos as part of their build-up activities heading toward the nationwide campus strikes on Sept. 23 against budget cuts.

“Even Beauty Queen Shamcey Supsup called for free and quality education and higher state funding on state universities and colleges like her alma mater UP. Rep. Castelo should make such statement too rather than overrating planking,” Lemence ended. ###

Reference:         Allen Lemuel Lemence

Spokesperson, Save our Education Movement

09272771096

Mark Vincent Baracao and Beverly Laguartilla

Media desk, Save Our Education Movement

saveoureducationmovt@gmail.com | 09352986944; 09358676334

Facebook: Save Our Education Movement

                                Strike Lead

Facebook: CEGP Pambansang Opisina


Southern Tagalog region STRIKES BACK for higher subsidy on education and social services

MEDIA ADVISORY | SEPTEMBER 20, 2011

Reference:         Allen Lemuel Lemence

Spokesperson, Save our Education Movement

09272771096

Mark Vincent Baracao and Beverly Laguartilla

Media desk, Save Our Education Movement

saveoureducationmovt@gmail.com | 09352986944; 09358676334

Facebook: Save Our Education Movement

 

                                Strike Lead

Facebook: CEGP Pambansang Opisina

 

 

 

BACKGROUND

State universities and colleges (SUCs) are expecting another round of budget cuts as progressive party-lists and nationalist organizations review the National Expenditure Program (NEP) 2012 of the Aquino administration.

 

According to Kabataan Party-list in a joint budget review with Kilos Na Laban sa Budget Cuts alliance, 112 SUCs are only allocated with P21.89 million next year, P569.8 million lower compared with this year’s allocation. The maintenance fund for 45 SUCs will be reduced by P250.9 million, the personnel services fund of 58 SUCs will be reduced by P403.3 million amid automatic appropriation as per Salary Standardization Law and capital outlay fund of all SUCs will remain at zero peso.

 

The country’s premier state university, the University of the Philippines, will receive budget allocation with P800 million budget cut, including the almost P700 million slash on salaries of teachers and employees.

 

Because of this abandonment of the Aquino administration of the basic social services, we, concerned students, parents, teachers and educators, school officials, and other groups and individuals, convened to establish the SAVE OUR EDUCATION MOVEMENT to firmly  assert for a sufficient state subsidy for education and link such call for a pro-people National Budget responsive to the needs of the Filipino People.

 

 

STRIKE BACK against BUDGET CUTS!

(UPLB activities)

 

DATE & TIME

ACTIVITY/IES

BACKGROUND & PHOTO OPPORTUNITIES

Sept 20, 4pm Funeral march Title: ““You Can Do the Resurrection, Strike Back for Education!”

An activity after the ‘Calamba 7’ hearing. Calamba 7 includes the five UP students and 2 Anakpawis party-list members that were detained after heckling “Walang pagbabago sa ilalim ni Aquino!” during Aquino’s speech on Calamba Day in Calamba City.

Students led by Samahan ng Kabataan para sa bayan through the initiative of Anakbayan-UPLB, League of Filipino Students-UPLB, Gabriela Youth-UPLB, UPLB Kultuang Ugnayan ng Kabataan para sa Bayan, Umalohokan, Inc. and National Union of Students of the Philippines-Southern Tagalog will march with a coffin where the word “RIP Education” is painted. The students will put crosses around the campus with the words “Do the resurrection for education! Strike back on Sept 23!” The coffin will be burned down as students vow to protest for education to resurrect as an inalienable right of the people.

Sept 21, 4pm multi-sectoral mobilization (4pm) Different sectors led by the Bagong Alyansang Makabayan Southern Tagalog through the initiative of of Anakbayan-ST Gabriela Youth-UPLB and League of Filipino Students-UPLB will march from Carabao Park in UPLB to Junction, Barangay Batong Malake,Los Banos Laguna.
Sept 22, 5-10pm New CAS Rooftop mini-concert & film viewing in UPLB and vigil until Sept 23 UP system-wide strike Sponsored by Katipunan ng mga Sangguniang Mag-aaral sa UP-UPLB through the initiative of University Student Council-UPLB

Band performances will come from homegrown bands, poem reading from UPLB Writers’ Club, Kartunista-Manunulat Kolektib and UPLB teachers and mini-skits from the Umalohokan, Inc and Freshman students from Isko’t iska 2011.

Sept 23, 10pm-12nn UP system-wide strike featuring UPLB planking against budget cuts

Red Ribbon wearing

Sponsored by the Save Our Education Movement through the initiative of University Student Council-UPLB, Samahan ng Kabataan para sa Bayan and UPLB Kulturang Ugnayan ng Kabataan Alay sa Bayan.

A solidarity program of students, teachers, employees, school officials, parents and alumni will gather at the Oblation ground in UP Los Banos.

UPLB planking will be held, where in students will lie face down in Oblation ground forming the word (tentative) “No To Budget Cuts!”

Red Ribbon wearing is sponsored by the Alyansa ng mga Manlalaro sa UPLB

Sept 20-23 Free t-shirt printing Sponsored by the Anakbayan-UPLB, League of Filipino Students-UPLB, Gabriela Youth-UPLB, Student Christian Movement-UPLB

Available at the Humanities Building Lobby every 10am-5pm. Students bring t-shirt appropriate for red and black print and they will obtain free t-shirt print with an Aquino caricature cutting down a chair with a hand-saw, and a ‘stop’ sign on it, with a “No to Budget Cut!” statement below the caricature.

Sept 20-23 Mobile art exhibit Sponsored by the UPLB Kulturang Ugnayan ng Kabataan Alay sa Bayan

Different artworks of resistance, photos of strikes and student protests and human performance art will be displayed on building open area such as lobby. The exhibit will be hopped on different buildings everyday.

Sept 20-23 “Strike A Pose to oppose” photo booth Sponsored by Samahan ng Kabataan para sa Bayan and UPLB Kulturang Ugnayan ng Kabataan Alay sa Bayan in cooperation with InFocus Camera Guild.

A student will pose in his/her chosen area. The photo will be edited so the statement “I pose to oppose budget cut! Strike on Sept 23!” will be attached. Photos are collated in a photo album in Facebook.

Sept 20-23 Noise Barrage Sponsored by the Anakbayan-UPLB, League of Filipino Students-UPLB, Gabriela Youth-UPLB, Student Christian Movement-UPLB

Noise barrage everyday will be held at Carabao park and Humanities steps in UPLB.


Anti-budget cut campaigners praise Supsup for advocating ‘Free Ed’

PRESS RELEASE | SEPTEMBER 19, 2011

MEDIA COVERAGE IS REQUESTED.

Reference: Allen Lemuel Lemence
Spokesperson, Save our Education Movement
saveoureducationmovt@gmail.com ; 09272771096
Facebook: Save our Education Movement

Strike Leads
Facebook: CEGP Pambansang Opisina

Anti-budget cut campaigners praise Supsup for advocating ‘Free Ed’

Ms Shamcey Supsup, third runner up in Ms. Universe 2011, advocates for free and quality education for all. Photo taken from http://www.adlsu.com/2011/09/13/shamcey-supsup-is-ms-universe-3rd-runner-up/

A multi-sectoral alliance campaigning against the impeding budget cuts on social services joins Philippine bet in the Ms. Universe pageant Shamcey Supsup for promoting “free and quality education”.

After arriving from Brazil, Supsup was interviewed in a primetime news program where a news anchor recognizes her current influence to the public for bagging the third runner-up title in the most coveted Ms. Universe pageant. Having said this, the anchor asked Supsup for her advocacy, and Supsup answered, “Free and quality education for everyone.”

“She is truly a representation of ‘beauty and brain’. Moreover, she is truly an Iskolar ng Bayan (scholar of the people) for advocating for ‘free and quality education for everyone’”, Save our Education Movement Spokesperson Allen Lemence said. Lemence is also a BS Chemical Engineering student in the University of the Philippines Los Banos.

Supsup is a University of the Philippines Diliman alumna, graduated Magna Cum Laude from the Architecture undergraduate program of the university.

“[Supsup] deserves more than congratulatory messages. Her advocacy is very timely today as the Philippine education is looming in saddening condition. She, herself, knows this being an Iskolar ng Bayan from UP that experiences budget cuts year after year,” Lemence continued.

Save our Education Movement, an alliance based in Southern Tagalog region, launched its campaign on Aug. 2 against budget cuts and calls for a “pro-people national budget” with which social services including education receive “sufficient state subsidy”.

Save our Education is joining another broader multi-sectoral alliance Kilos Na Laban sa Budget Cuts (Act Now against Budget Cuts) for different forms of action including lobbying to legislators, cyber-campaigning like the “Pose to Oppose Budget Cut” campaign in Facebook and the series of campus strikes this week.

“We believe that Supsup inspired the Filipino people not only for taking pride for the country as a beauty queen, but for her advocacy on education as well,” Lemence added. “We hope she will link her arms with her fellow Iskolars ng Bayan in UP and other state universities and colleges for more appropriate action to advance our advocacy against budget cut on education,” he ended.


SAVE OUR EDUCATION MOVEMENT Manifesto of Unity

Manifesto of Unity

We declare that education as a constitutionally-guaranteed human right is a just struggle of the Filipino youth and students and of the Filipino people as well. With the understanding of the current education that is colonial, commercialized and fascist, it results in an education system that is irresponsive of the needs of the Filipino people for a genuine national development. Thus, we believe that in order to achieve genuine education reforms, the government must create a pro-people national budget allocation that suffices for the basic social services, including education.

            With the government’s mis-prioritization of education and other social services, three of 12 State Universities and Colleges (SUCs) in Southern Tagalog region including University of the Philippines System (P 208M), Batangas State University (P 5.8M) and Cavite State University (P 10.5M) suffered decrease on both maintenance and other operating expenditures and personal services. Further, capital outlay remains to receive nothing leaving us with no infrastructural development and acquisitions for all SUCs.

Other social services such as health and housing also share a continuously decreasing budget that result in a dismal state of the Filipino people. Housing services is allotted with only P 5.6B the same as last year to cater not for the hundreds of thousands of families dislocated from their settlements, but for the members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines. Health services increased to P 49.9B from the current P 36B, but remains insufficient to attend the increasing demand for health units and health workers.

Thereby, we call for a pro-people budget allocation on basic social services that will cater to needs of the Filipino people. We assert that the government must re-channel the biggest share of the general budget to education and other basic social services instead of debt servicing. We detest any schemes and tactics to further increase military spending, pork barrel and other band-aid programs of the government.

We remain that through forging unities and solidarities among students, parents, teachers, educators and all other stakeholders through engaging in various forms of activities and generating widest network of people with the same advocacy that the advancement of genuine national development will be realized.

Intensify our fight against Aquino administration’s mis-prioritization of education and other basic social services!

Fight for a pro-people National Budget allocation!

SAVE OUR EDUCATION MOVEMENT
Spokesperson: Allen Lemuel G. Lemence

Contact details: +63927.277.1096; saveoureducationmovt@gmail.com

This was signed by 83 concerned individuals during the Convention of SAVE OUR EDUCATION MOVEMENT last August 2, 2011. Anakbayan-Southern Tagalog is the primary convenor of SAVE OUR EDUCATION MOVEMENT.