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G.R. No.

L-5279 October 31, 1955


PHILIPPINE ASSOCIATION OF COLLEGES AND UNIVERSITIES, ETC ., petitioner,vs. SECRETARY OF EDUCATION and
the BOARD OF TEXTBOOKS, respondents.
Ponente: Bengzon, J.
Statement of Facts and Procedural History
1. The Philippine Association of Colleges and Universities made a petition that Acts No. 2706 otherwise known as
the Act making the Inspection and Recognition of private schools and colleges obligatory for the Secretary of
Public Instruction and was amended by Act No. 3075 and Commonwealth Act No. 180 be declared
unconstitutional on the grounds that
a. the act deprives the owner of the school and colleges as well as teachers and parents of liberty and
property without due process of Law;
b. it will also deprive the parents of their Natural Rights and duty to rear their children for civic
efficiency and
c. its provisions conferred on the Secretary of Education unlimited powers and discretion to prescribe
rules and standards constitute towards unlawful delegation of Legislative powers.
2. Section 1 of Act No. 2706 declares:
It shall be the duty of the Secretary of Public Instruction to maintain a general standard of efficiency in all private schools and
colleges of the Philippines so that the same shall furnish adequate instruction to the public, in accordance with the class and
grade of instruction given in them, and for this purpose said Secretary or his duly authorized representative shall have
authority to advise, inspect, and regulate said schools and colleges in order to determine the efficiency of instruction given in
the same,

3. The petitioner also complains that securing a permit to the Secretary of Education before opening a school is
not originally included in the original Act 2706.
4. In support to the first proposition of the petitioners they contended that the Constitution guaranteed the
right of a citizen to own and operate a school and any law requiring previous governmental approval or
permit before such person could exercise the said right
5. On the other hand, the defendant Legal Representative submitted a memorandum contending that
a. the matters presented no justiciable controversy exhibiting unavoidable necessity of deciding the
constitutional question;
b. petitioners are in estoppel to challenge the validity of the said act and
c. the Act is constitutionally valid.
6. The petition for prohibition was dismissed by the court.

Issue: Are Act No. 2706 as amended by Act no. 3075 and Commonwealth Act no. 180 void and unconstitutional?
NO.
Judgment
For all the foregoing considerations, reserving to the petitioners the right to institute in the proper court,
and at the proper time, such actions as may call for decision of the issue herein presented by them, this
petition for prohibition will be denied.
Holding
The Petitioner suffered no wrong under the terms of law and needs no relief in the form they seek to obtain.
Moreover, there is no justiciable controversy presented before the court. It is an established principle that to entitle a
private individual immediately in danger of sustaining a direct injury and it is not sufficient that he has merely invoke
the judicial power to determined the validity of executive and legislative action he must show that he has sustained
common interest to all members of the public.
Furthermore, the power of the courts to declare a law unconstitutional arises only when the interest of
litigant require the use of judicial authority for their protection
against actual interference. As such, Judicial Power is limited to the decision of actual cases and controversies and the
authority to pass on the validity of statutes is incidental to the decisions of such cases where conflicting claims under
the constitution and under the legislative act assailed as contrary to the constitution but it is legitimate only in the
last resort and it must be necessary to determined a real and vital controversy between litigants. Thus, actions like
this are brought for a positive purpose to obtain actual positive relief and the court does not sit to adjudicate a mere
academic question to satisfy scholarly interest therein.
The court however, finds the defendant position to be sufficiently sustained and state that the petitioner
remedy is to challenge the regulation not to invalidate the law because it needs no argument to show that abuse by
officials entrusted with the execution of the statute does not per se demonstrate the unconstitutionality of such
statute. On this phase of the litigation the court conclude that there has been no undue delegation of legislative power

even if the petitioners appended a list of circulars and memoranda issued by the Department of Education they fail to
indicate which of such official documents was constitutionally objectionable for being capricious or pain nuisance.