Duterte Approves Dry Run of Face-to-Face Classes in January

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President Rodrigo Duterte recently approved the dry run of face-to-face classes starting in January 2021. But the plan has been met with mixed reactions from netizens.

Due to the COVID-19 crisis, the Department of Education (DepEd) in the Philippines has been implementing a distance learning system since the start of school year 2020-2021 last October.

As cases continue to rise in various areas across the country, a lot of parents are thankful for this system. However, due to the many challenges that teachers, students, and parents face because of the online classes, there were also calls for face-to-face classes in areas with very few or no cases of COVID-19.

Photo credit: KUTV

Recently, President Rodrigo Duterte and the Cabinet approved the dry run and pilot implementation of face-to-face classes which will be conducted in select schools in areas deemed to be low-risk to COVID-19, announced presidential spokesperson Harry Roque.

From December 14 to 18, DepEd Regional Directors have to send a list of nominated schools to Education Secretary Leonor Briones. The DepEd will pick the schools that will be included in the dry run by December 28.

Before the dry run begins, the school officials and representatives from the participating schools will undergo mobilization, orientation, and readiness confirmation from January 4 to 8.

The dry run itself will be from January 11 to 23. This will be monitored by the DepEd and the COVID-19 National Task Force. After the dry run, the regional reports will be submitted for final recommendation to the president, Roque added.

Photo credit: Korea Times

Participation to face-to-face classes will be voluntary. Students who wish to participate are required to submit a parent’s permit.

Although a number of teachers and parents are happy with this news, there were also those who expressed concern that this move might be premature, considering that there remain thousands of COVID-19 cases across the country.

Here’s the DepEd’s official statement regarding this matter:

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