MANILA, Philippines—Shape up or close shop.
The Commission on Higher Education (CHEd) warned nursing schools with dismal board examination passing rates to shape up within the next three years or close shop.
CHEd Executive Director Julito Vitriolo said on Tuesday that "more than 100 nursing schools" around the country would be closed by 2013 if their average board exam passing rate for the next three years remained below 30 percent, the minimum set by CHEd Memorandum Order (CMO) No. 14 Series of 2009.
"Starting this school year, we will be monitoring them and if their passing rate remains below 30 percent by 2013, then their nursing program will be phased out," Vitriolo said in an interview.
"We will implement the closure by 2013, based on CMO 14. We are already monitoring 16 government schools that offer nursing but are not performing well. The private schools will follow," he added.
CHEd on Monday said around 55 percent of nursing schools in the country—253 out of 464 nursing schools—had a passing grade that fell short of the 40.70 percent national passing average.
This figure was based on the licensure examinations the Professional Regulations Commission (PRC) supervised in June and November 2009.
"In NCR alone, 47 nursing schools were identified to be among the low-performing nursing schools," the commission said in a statement.
It directed interested parties to visit the PRC website (www.prc.gov.ph) for "a more complete list of low-performing nursing schools per region."
Vitriolo said that out of the 253 "low-performing" nursing schools, "more than 100" got a passing grade of below 30 percent.
CHEd chair Emmanuel Angeles said they would continue to monitor and "evaluate the performance of nursing schools nationwide and to ensure the quality of nursing education in the country."
Meanwhile, CHEd also announced the names of the top performing schools offering the Bachelor of Science in Nursing programs in the country for 2009. These schools’ passing rate was higher than the 40.70 percent national average.
For those that had 1,000 or more examinees, the top three performing schools were Far Eastern University-Manila, Centro Escolar University-Manila and Manila Central University-Caloocan City.
For those with 100-999 takers, the top three were Trinity University of Asia (Trinity-QC), University of Santo Tomas and Chinese General Hospital College of Nursing and Liberal Arts.
For those with 10-99 examinees, University of the Philippines-Manila, Philippine-Christian University-Manila and Saint Paul University-Quezon City came on top.