BY Noel Talacay
PUBLIC elementary and high school classes that are supposed to end in June this year have been extended up to July 10, the Department of Education (DepEd) announced yesterday.
Under DepEd Order No. 012, s. 2021 entitled “Amendment to DepEd Order No. 030, s. 2020 (Amendment to DepEd Order No. 007, s. 2020, School Calendar and Activities for School Year 2020-2021),” the third grading period has been moved from March 22 to May 15 while the fourth grading period is set on May 17 to July 10.
“This policy shall be implemented in all public elementary and secondary schools nationwide for SY 2020-2021,” the DepEd said.
It also encouraged private schools, technical and vocational institutions, and higher educational institutions, including state and local universities and colleges offering the K to 12 Basic Education Program, to implement the new guidelines.
DepEd Undersecretary for Curriculum and Instruction Diosdado San Antonio said the agency has scrapped the plan to implement a two-week break for schoolyear 2020-2021.
“It was among the many options we were considering but noting the objections from our stakeholders, we will no longer propose a two-week break,” San Antonio said.
Meanwhile, the Senate on Tuesday night adopted a resolution recommending the pilot testing of face-to-face classes in areas with zero or low recorded cases of COVID-19.
Principally authored by Senate President Vicente Sotto II, Senate Resolution 663 took into consideration Senate Bill 668 filed by Senators Sherwin Gatchalian, Nancy Binay, Francis Pangilinan, Grace Poe, Pia Cayetano, Joel Villanueva, and Juan Edgardo Angara.
The measures propose the holding of pilot testing of face-to-face classes in low-risk areas while following stringent mitigation measures, strict health protocols, and guidelines of the Department of Health and of the Inter-Agency Task Force on the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases.
Gatchalian, who heads the committee on basic education, arts and culture chair, said the resolution does not seek to force the return of face-to-face classes nationwide, but to let students in low-risk areas to be able to learn more through physical classes.
Education Undersecretary Nepomuceno Malaluan said the number of schools recommended for the pilot testing of face-to-face classes has increased, from 1,065 to 1,579, including 36 from the National Capital Region, once the government shifts to the more relaxed modified general community quarantine (MGCQ). – With Raymond Africa