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NAME: Stacy Shara C.

Otaza Subject: Constitutional Law 2

Philippine Law School Admission Test (PhilSAT) should not be implemented.

Brief History

In year 2016 the Legal Education Board (LEB) release memorandum Number 7 mandating that a
nationwide uniform admission test to all who aspire to engage in the further study of law.

Accordingly, the test is designed to improve the quality of legal education.

It is upon my understanding that the LEB memorandum circular no. 7 should be struck down
upon the following reasons.

1. It is an encroachment to the Academic Freedom granted by our constitution to


Schools.

This premise is enshrined in ARTICLE XIV of the 1987 Constitution

SECTION 5. (1) The State shall take into account regional and sectoral needs and conditions and
shall encourage local planning in the development of educational policies and programs.

(2) Academic freedom shall be enjoyed in all institutions of higher learning.

(3) Every citizen has a right to select a profession or course of study, subject to fair, reasonable,
and equitable admission and academic requirements.

(4) The State shall enhance the right of teachers to professional advancement. Non-teaching
academic and non-academic personnel shall enjoy the protection of the State.

(5) The State shall assign the highest budgetary priority to education and ensure that teaching
will attract and retain its rightful share of the best available talents through adequate
remuneration and other means of job satisfaction and fulfillment.

Furthermore, in the case of Garcia vs. Faculty Admission (1973) the Supreme Court held that the
school or college itself is possessed the right to choose student. It decides for itself its aims and
objectives and how best to attain them. It is free from outside coercion or interference save
possibly when the overriding public welfare calls for some restraint. It has a wide sphere of
autonomy certainly extending to the choice of students. This constitutional provision is not to be
construed in a niggardly manner or in a gradging fashion.

To apply the certain laws mentioned above, PhilSat imposes a regulation to all law school
mandating the later to not accept the students who have not taken or failed the exam, Philsat
unquestionably and indisputably is an encroachment to the right vested by our constitution to
institutions of higher learning. The right to choose who to teach and what to teach is lodge to the
institution as the later enjoys Academic Freedom.

2. It violates the right of every citizen has a right to select a profession or course of study,
subject to fair, reasonable, and equitable admission and academic requirements.

While it may be true that the right to study may be regulated by law, such law should be fair and
reasonable as mandated by our constitution.

The case of Tablarin vs. Guitierez is inapplicable in the case at bar, in the later case the High
Court said, This question is perhaps most usefully approached by recalling that the regulation of
the practice of medicine in all its branches has long been recognized as a reasonable method of
protecting the health and safety of the public.8 That the power to regulate and control the practice
of medicine includes the power to regulate admission to the ranks of those authorized to practice
medicine, is also well recognized. thus, legislation and administrative regulations requiring those
who wish to practice medicine first to take and pass medical board examinations have long ago
been recognized as valid exercises of governmental power.

In the case above mentioned the court took notice of the nature of the practice of the medical
profession by stating that the said admission test should be regulated because it is reasonable
method of protecting and safety of the public. However, we should be able to distinguish the
practice of Medicine and Law.

The practice of law as define in the case of Cyatano vs Monsod The rendition of services
requiring the knowledge and the application of legal principles and technique to serve the interest
of another with his consent. It is not limited to appearing in court, or advising and assisting in the
conduct of litigation, but embraces the preparation of pleadings, and other papers incident to
actions and special proceedings, conveyancing, the preparation of legal instruments of all kinds,
and the giving of all legal advice to clients. While in the case of Casumpang vs Cortejo 2015 the
Supreme Court had the time to discuss the standard of care in the medical profession “A
determination of whether or not the petitioning doctors met the required standard of care
involves a question of mixed fact and law; it is factual as medical negligence cases are highly
technical in nature, requiring the presentation of expert witnesses to provide guidance to the
court on matters clearly falling within the domain of medical science, and legal, insofar as the
Court, after evaluating the expert testimonies, and guided by medical literature, learned treatises,
and its fund of common knowledge, ultimately determines whether breach of duty took place.
Whether or not Dr. Casumpang and Dr. Sanga committed a breach of duty is to be measured by
the yardstick of professional standards observed by the other members of the medical profession
in good standing under similar circumstances.

The High Court took knowledge of the nature and technicality of medical profession in its
imposition to further filter aspiring medical students. However, Legal profession is different.
Legal profession is a field of reason; the profession itself acknowledge errors and tries to rectify
it by the means provided by law. Example of which is when there is grave abuse of discretion on
the courts, a client may change counsel or even appeal to a higher court on the other hand once a
medical practioner is negligence it may result to the immediate death of their patient/client.

3. PhilSat is Unconstitutional because it encroaches the power of the Supreme Court.

REPUBLIC ACT NO. 7662 is an act creating the Legal Education Board

Section 4 of the said act provides

Section 4. Legal Education Board; Creation and Composition. - To carry out the purpose of this
Act, there is hereby created the Legal Education Board, hereinafter referred to as the Board,
attached solely for budgetary purposes and administrative support to the Department of
Education, Culture and Sports.

However, Article 8, Section 5 of the 1987 Constitution states that the Supreme Court shall have
the power over “admission to the practice of law, the integrated bar, and legal assistance to the
underprivileged.”

Clearly, RA. 7662 is only limited to the budgetary and administrative support, furthermore the
admission and practice of law is solely lodge to the Supreme court where in the legal education
Board is not connected as stated by Section 4 of RA 7662.