Former House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano on Thursday made a push for improved access and opportunities to education, saying this is key to the development of the nation.
“Kaming magkakapatid kasi, [tinuro] ng aming ama sa amin, si Senator Rene Compañero Cayetano, na education is the key. Ang nanay ko’y isang teacher, ang lola ko po ay isang public school teacher, at ang asawa ko po’y naging scholar din,” he said in a media interview on February 17, 2022.
(My siblings and I were taught by our father, Senator Rene ‘Compañero’ Cayetano, that education is the key. Our mother was a teacher, our grandmother was a public school teacher, and my wife is a scholar.)
Cayetano comes from a family of educators. His grandmother, Julianna Cabrera, and mother, Sandra Schramm, were both teachers. Meanwhile, his father, former Senator Renato Cayetano, was a professor in law school.
He said he will push for greater government support for education once he completes his comeback to the Senate.
“Ito ay isa sana na itutulak ko, kasi kapag tinulungan ang magulang sa pagpapaaral ng anak, napakalaki ng igagaan sa kahirapan lalo na po ngayong pandemic na nagrerecover tayo, so asahan niyo na isa ‘yan sa itutulak natin,” Cayetano said.
(This is one of the matters I will push for because if you help parents in the education of their children, it’s a weight off their shoulders especially in the middle of a pandemic where we’re all still recovering.)
Cayetano, who is gunning for a Senate seat in the May elections, said he plans to use Taguig City’s education and scholarship system as a blueprint for these future reforms.
Taguig City has been providing students with free education and supplies from preschool to college in order to give them greater opportunities in the future. The cost of major school events, such as graduation programs and junior proms, are also shouldered by the city government.
“From elementary, libre ang uniporme, tahi na ‘yan. Libre po ang bag, notebooks, meron pong vanity kit ‘yan na may toothbrush, pati po mga medical, dental… and mayroon kaming computer-assisted learning from Singapore,” Cayetano said.
(From elementary school, uniforms are free. Even bags, notebooks, and hygiene kits with toothbrushes, as well as medical and dental check-ups… and we have computer-assisted learning programs from Singapore.)
High school graduates in Taguig automatically become the city’s scholars, with college and post-graduate students entitled to subsidies amounting to P15,000 to P50,000 each.
“Ayaw namin ng programang magpapasalamat lang ng tao. Gusto namin ang programa actually mag-gagraduate,” he said.
(We don’t want programs that merely thank people. We want programs that actually help students graduate.)
Cayetano said cities become progressive only when they give the right opportunities for their people to uplift themselves.
“‘Pag ang tao binigyan mo ng oportunidad yumaman, y’ung siyudad, siguradong yayaman, (If we give people opportunities, then surely the city will benefit from this),” he said. “…Kaya ito ng national government.” he added.###