/ 8 May 2024

TO FULFILL its mandate to conduct a national review and assessment of education agencies, formulate policy and program recommendations, the 2nd Congressional Commission on Education or EDCOM 2 has added five renowned experts to its Standing Committees.

The five new members will focus on the commission’s priority areas on Early Childhood Care and Development and Governance and Finance.

The Committee welcomes Dr. Maria Asuncion Silvestre, nutrition expert; Dr. Malcolm Garma, education systems specialist; Sec. Nieves Confesor, former DOLE Secretary; Dr. Karl Kendrick Chua, former NEDA Director-General; and Mr. Roger Masapol, education specialist.

Dr. Silvestre is a staunch advocate for exclusive breastfeeding and mother and child care and was recently awarded the 2024 United Arab Emirates Health Foundation Prize during the 76th World Health Assembly for her work in promoting exclusive breastfeeding and improving the health of mothers and newborns.

Dr. Garma, meanwhile, began his career in the education sector as an instructor and leader in the University of the Philippines Integrated School and steered the Department of Education as former Regional Director of DepEd NCR and Region III, and as Assistant Secretary for Field Operations.

With his expertise in education systems strengthening, he is currently the adviser of the ABC+ program of USAID-RTI International. Garma joins the EDCOM 2 Standing Committee on Governance and Finance.

Former Secretary Confesor is currently an adjunct faculty of the Asian Institute of Management teaching Business Administration and International Studies.

Confesor specializes in leadership and strategic negotiation, and labor and employment policy and administration. She joins the Standing Committee on Governance and Finance.

Chua is one of the renowned economists of the Philippines.

Prior to his leadership roles in the government, the former National Economic and Development Authority Director-General and Department of Finance Undersecretary was the senior country economist of the World Bank, advising the government on strategies that will attain inclusive growth.

On the other hand, Masapol, the former Department of Education Director of Planning Service, is a humanitarian civil servant and right-to-education advocate who specializes in education planning, policy development and analysis, program development, and research monitoring and evaluation.

The five join the other members of the Standing Committees of the Commission, which include Technical Vocational Education and Training & Lifelong Learning, and Higher Education & Teacher Education and Development.