Bello proposes to abolish PRC board exams, bar exam

MANILA, Philippines – Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III has made a suggestion to remove board exams, especially for those seeking to become lawyers and registered nurses.

Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III wants to remove licensure exams
Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III wants to remove licensure exams | Photo Courtesy: GMA News

Arguing that students have already taken enough tests and examinations while studying their professions, Bello said lawmakers should seriously consider abolishing professional exams.

Bello cited the nursing profession as an example and explained that if the school is accredited by the Commission on Higher Education (CHED), there is no need to seek board exams to gauge the students' skills and expertise as a professional nurse. He revealed that he already forwarded his proposal to the Philippine Nurses Association and the Board of Nursing.

"Bakit pa kailangan ng board exam eh ilang exam ang dinaanan nila sa nursing? Puro na lang exam. Do they not trust these schools where these nurses came from, especially kung ‘yung school na pinanggalingan nila ay accredited by CHEd (Commission on Higher Education)?" he said.

"So sabi ko pag-aralan na ‘yan and then we can recommend to Congress na tanggalin na ‘yung mga exam exam na ‘yan. Gastos sa ating mga nurses.‘Pag grumaduate na, nakuha na lahat ng kailangang pag-aralan nila, [dapat] pwede nang magpractice, hindi na kailangan ng examination,” he added.

Bello's statement came when he was asked about the number of nurses to be deployed abroad. He answered that the 1,500-cap has yet to be filled as more graduates will need to undergo the nursing licensure exam in July. This made Bello explain why he questions the need for board exams.

Bello also made the same remark to board exams for engineers and dentists and bar exam for lawyers, noting that actual practice of the profession is more important.

“Dapat alisin na ‘yung mga board exam sa mga engineer, board exam sa dentistry, bar exam. Eight years ka nang nag-aaral para maging abogado, pumasa ka na sa lahat ng exam, kukuha ka pa ng Bar?” he stressed.

"Kagaya sa Bar, why don’t we do away with Bar? Tutal ‘yung estudyante may four years pre-law, four years proper. Dadaan ka sa rigorous scrutiny, tapos dadaan ka pa sa Bar,” he said.

“Eh nakita mo naman ‘yung mga nagta-top sa bar hindi naman sila kasing galing pagdating sa practice although I am not trying to demean them,” he added.

The labor secretary said that his recommendation would also be helpful to those seeking to become engineers, dentists and others.

— Sally, The Summit Express

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