SOURCE: Press and Public Affairs Bureau
The Members of the House of Representatives have unanimously approved on third and final reading House Bill 8139 or the Proposed “Tulong-Trabaho Act” which seeks to institute a Philippine Labor Force Competency Competitiveness Program and free access to Technical-Vocational Education and Training (TVET).
All 205 House Members present during the voting endorsed the bill, which is principally authored by Rep. Alfred Vargas (5th District, Quezon City).
The bill aims to: 1) strengthen the qualifications of the Filipino workforce to meet the challenges of the rapidly evolving workplaces and work structures; 2) provide for more innovative approaches to technical-vocational education and training (TVET) linked to the requirement of industry; 3) facilitate access to quality TVET; and 4) encourage the participation of industry and communities in competencies formation and upgrading towards a more competitive Filipino workforce.
The bill refers to the Philippine TVET Competency Assessment and Certificate System as “a quality assured system in recognition of the attainment of competencies (knowledge, skills, attitudes, and values) as referred to the competency standards set for middle-level occupation. It is the process of determining the qualification level of a person and a tool in identifying the training needs of a person with competency gaps.
Meanwhile, the TVET refers to the education or training programs registered with the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) involving general education, the study of technologies and related sciences, acquisition of practical skills relating to occupations in various sectors of economic life and social life and comprises formal (organized programs as part of the school system) approaches.
Selected Training Programs (STPs) refer to school-based, center-based, community-based or enterprise-based technical-vocational training programs approved by the TESDA Board based on the recommendations of pertinent industries.
The bill provides for the creation of the Tulong-Trabaho Fund that shall provide qualified recipients with access to TVET programs under the STPs to be determined by the TESDA Board through the full payment of training fees.
Excluded from the coverage of the Act shall be existing workers in enterprise-based companies or industries.
Access to the Tulong-Trabaho Fund shall be made available to: (a) any person at least 15 years old, who is no longer in school and does not have a regular job or is not undergoing any form of training for a particular job, such as out-of school youth, unemployed adults, and those intending to work in the emerging sectors or industries; and (b) part-time or underemployed workers who intend to develop and expand their current skills and technical-vocational training.
Training programs (school-based, center-based, community-based, or enterprise-based) of the TESDA shall be able to help address the skills mismatch of applicants and employer requirements.
Moreover, a Tulong-Trabaho Fund will be established for the Philippine Labor Force Competency Competitiveness Program. It will cover training fees as well as additional financial assistance such as transportation allowance and laboratory fees, as needed.
A Joint Congressional Oversight Committee on Tulong-Trabaho shall be created to monitor and review the implementation of the Act as well as the disbursements of the Tulong-Trabaho Fund. It shall be composed of three members each from the House Committee on Higher and Technical Education and the House Committee on Labor and Employment, to be appointed by the House Speaker, and the Senate Committee on Education, Arts and Culture and the Senate Committee on Labor, Employment and Human Resources Development, to be appointed by the Senate President. At least one member from each Committee shall represent the minority. | Novel Paller/ Rowena B. Bundang