A LETTER from the Department of Education (DepEd) clarifying the provision of the Student-Athletes Protection Act could pave the way for two players from a Bacolod City high school to suit up in the Negros Occidental Private Schools Sports Cultural Educational Association (Nopsscea) this season.
Tay Tung High School received a letter from DepEd assistant secretary Tonisito Umali interpreting a part of the Student-Athletes Protection Act or Republic Act 10676 after two players from its high school basketball team were barred from playing in the league this year.
Cagers Nicole Diether Rallos and Jayson Puray were declared ineligible last month by Nopsscea, saying the two have to undergo a one-year residency after their transfer to Tay Tung High School from Sun Yat Sen High School in Iloilo (a non-Nopsscea member) as per league rules.
But Umali clarified the provision of the law, particularly Section 4b which states that athletic associations are not allowed to impose residency period on high school players, although the school league can impose a one-year residency for transfers from within the league.
“In other words, the one-year residency rule does not apply to transfers of student-athletes from a school which is not a member of an athletic association to another school which is a member of said athletic association,” said Umali in the letter addressed to DepEd Region VI– Western Visayas which was al
DepEd’s take on the issue came even as Sen. Pia Cayetano also made representations to Nopsscea that the Student-Athletes Protection Act which she authored be applied by the league.
In a previous interview with the Visayan Daily Star, Nopsscea officials said they are still waiting for the implementing rules and regulations of the law before imposing it.
“As emphasized by Nopsscea president Bob Bergante, until the IRR of the new law comes out, everyone will have to adhere by the Nopsscea rule on residency,” said Nopsscea official Roger Banzuela to the Daily Star.