/ 10 February 2021

THE SAMAHAN ng Progresibong Kabataan  slammed the proposal of the Commission on Higher Education to include military and police officers in the panel of education experts to define academic freedom.

The group said that this was a clear and present danger to members of the academic community.

The group pointed out that major stakeholders such as students, faculty, and school workers were not included in the proposal.

“We have once again been left out of the discussion about upholding our rights and protecting our own lives,” John Lazaro, the group’s national spokesperson, said in a statement.

“CHED allowed the discussion about our freedom to commence without us, and because of that millions of lives are now in danger for it and the integrity of academic institutions compromised,” he added.

The group held a rally outside the CHED central office in Quezon City to demand that students’ voices be heard in the discussion about academic freedom.

“Time and time again, this agency has been a scene of the crime of disenfranchising and ignoring millions upon millions of students, the pandemic only worsened it” Lazaro said.

“Until a thorough investigation is carried out, that is to say that De Vera is booted out of office, this building will be marked by the stains of his crimes,” he added.