Photo: Unsplash/Bima Rahmanda
The Department of Education (DepEd) announced on Saturday that it is allowing private and non-DepEd schools such as those connected to a state university or to a local university, Catholic universities, as well as science high schools and those managed by the Department of Science and Technology (DOST), to open classes before October 5.
According to the education bureau, such schools will be allowed to start classes provided that there are absolutely no face-to-face classes held and a distance learning approach is implemented. The statement was made as a result of a meeting with the Office of the Executive Secretary clarifying how President Rodrigo Duterte’s approval to move the opening of classes to October 5 would apply to schools that had already begun classes or had scheduled these to start on August 24.
Only schools that follow DepEd’s guidelines on conducting activities during a pandemic and have sufficient learning materials would be given permission to begin classes before October 5.
DepEd shared on Friday that President Rodrigo Duterte had approved its recommendation to move the opening of classes from August 24 to October 5 in order to “provide relief to logistical limitations”. Pursuant to Republic Act (RA) No. 11480, which gives the President the power to move the date of the opening of classes in the Philippines or in areas during a state of calamity, an amendment was made to Republic Act (RA) No. 7797, which states that classes must open as early as the first Monday of June but no later than the last day of August.
Classes were earlier disrupted in March as community quarantines were implemented all over the country due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Under DepEd’s blended learning approach, television, radio, and the Internet are combined as modes of instruction as face-to-face classes will be largely prohibited.