Legarda eyes expanded TESDA mandate in future

August 22, 2023

Senate President Pro Tempore Loren Legarda today shared her vision for the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) as it nears its third decade of existence.

Legarda, a staunch supporter of the state agency, shared her desires for the agency, which has helped countless lives for almost three decades.

“I want to envision TESDA expanding even further — where every Filipino has the opportunity to acquire the skills and tools they need to pursue their dreams and contribute to national progress,” said Legarda during her keynote address at TESDA’s anniversary celebration at SM Megamall.

“Upskilling and reskilling must be an option that is available to all,” she added.

“We must transform lives beyond the limitations of social and economic boundaries. TESDA has a large role to play in answering the demands of the labor sector and in shaping a labor force that is responsive, fit, and adaptive.”

For her role in promoting various livelihood programs in her home province of Antique, Legarda was bestowed the National TESDA Kabalikat Award in 2021.

Among the programs pushed were the Barangay Kabuhayan Skills Training Program (BKSTP), Training for Work Scholarship Program (TWSP), and Special Training for Employment Program (STEP), which has benefitted over 18,000 Antiqueño trainees since 2016.

During the passage of the Universal Access to Quality Tertiary Education Act, Legarda ensured that access to tertiary education included those in the technical-vocational sector.

As one of her first pieces of legislation to open her fourth term in the Senate, Legarda pushed for the passage of Senate Bill No. 6, a proposed measure that seeks to create the Department of Technical Education, Training and Certification.

Once passed, it will strengthen the role of the TESDA to serve as a leading partner in the development of the Filipino workforce.

She also praised the agency for being at the forefront of web-based education through the TESDA Online Program, which has produced 3,220,912 course completions in 2022 alone.

“The world is changing at a rapid pace — technology, automation, and digitalization are reshaping industries and demanding new skill sets,” remarked Legarda.

“TESDA must be at the center of this. Our businesses and industries must connect with our educational institutions to assess, plan, and strategize our approach to providing quality technical-vocational education,” she continued. (End)