Students can now borrow to buy gadgets for online learning
The ongoing Land Bank of the Philippines (Landbank) loan program for tuition expenses has been expanded so that parents and students alike can also buy electronic gadgets for online classes.
In a statement Wednesday, the state-run Landbank said its “Interim Students’ loan for Tuition toward Upliftment of education for the Development of the Youth” (I-Study) loan would cover up to P50,000 per student for purchases of desktops, laptops or tablets to be used for online learning.
This new coverage will be part of the maximum loanable amounts of P150,000 per student or P300,000 per parent-borrower under I-Study.
Also, students of legal age are now eligible to apply for the I-Study program if they meet eligibility requirements, Landbank said, as only students’ parents and guardians were eligible to apply when the loan program was launched last year amid the harder times wrought by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The enhancement of the I-Study 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,” Landbank added.
Low interest rate
Landbank said these enhancements to I-Study took into consideration the extended implementation of distance education to prevent the further spread of the deadly coronavirus disease.
“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 said.
I-Study loans carry a fixed interest rate of 5 percent a year.
On top of I-Study, Landbank was also offering the loan program called “access to academic development to empower the masses towards endless opportunities” (Academe) to private education institutions so they can roll-out “study now, pay later” programs.
As of mid-February, Landbank extended P531.5 million in loans to 16 schools under Academe. which was also introduced last year.
Landbank said Academehad “a P3-billion program fund in credit support, a very low fixed interest rate of only 3 percent per annum, and payable based on the maturity of the sub-promissory notes but not to exceed three years.”
—Ben O. de Vera
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