Students of legal age can now directly tap the government-owned Land Bank of the Philippines’ loan program that aims to cover the purchase of electronic gadgets needed for online learning.
In a statement on Wednesday, the LandBank said students of legal age are now eligible to apply for its enhanced I-Study — Interim Students’ Loan for Tuitions towards Upliftment of Education for the Development of the Youth — Lending Program if they meet the necessary requirements.
It noted that when the loan program was initially launched last year, only parents and guardians or benefactors of students could apply for the financial assistance.
The state-run lender added it is now offering a loan of up to P50,000 per student to finance the purchase of learning gadgets such as laptop, desktop or tablet, that can be included in the maximum loanable amount of P150,000 per student or P300,000 per parent-borrower to cover payment for tuition or enrollment-related fees.
The enhancement of the program also includes the increase in maximum age eligibility of students from 30 years old to 50 years old; inclusion of scholar students whose scholarships do not fully cover their tuition; and the coverage of nonscholar students from private preschool, primary and secondary schools, it also announced.
“LandBank recognizes the need to support students in adapting to distance learning modalities. While we await the resumption of in-person classes, we hope that the I-Study Program can help students cover the financial requirements to purchase needed learning equipment and participate in online classes,” LandBank President and Chief Executive Cecilia Borromeo was quoted as saying.
The bank said its move to expand the I-Study credit facility comes at the heels of recent government pronouncements for the continued implementation of distance learning as a measure against the spread of coronavirus pandemic.
Meanwhile, LandBank also reported that it has approved P531.5-million worth of loans to 16 educational institutions as of Feb. 16 this year.
The approved loans were extended under its Academe — Access to Academic Development to Empower the Masses towards Endless Opportunities — Lending Program that aims to boost the capacity of private academic institutions to implement a “study now, pay later” scheme for its students.
It offers the “3-3-3” feature, with a P3-billion-program fund in credit support, a very low fixed interest rate of only three percent per annum, and payable based on the maturity of the subpromissory notes but not to exceed three years.
LandBank said the program forms part of the its support to the education sector, which offers credit to private and non-DepEd high schools, private technical-vocational and education training institutions, and private higher education institutions such as colleges and universities to provide continuing education to their students.