By Chito Chavez
The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) has issued a memorandum circular ordering the concerned local chief executives (LCEs) to cancel or suspend classes in selected schools only on the dates coinciding with the competition schedules of the Southeast Asian (SEA) Games in their respective areas.
The department’s memorandum for the suspension of classes only in 21 public and private schools, colleges and universities in Metro Manila, Central Luzon, and Southern Luzon from December 2 to 6 came after President Duterte rejected the proposal to suspend classes in all schools in Metro Manila and nearby regions.
DILG Undersecretary and spokesman Jonathan Malaya said the department has issued Memorandum Circular 2019-198 to cover this order. He said that those schools are located in cities and towns which are venues for the SEA Games.
DILG Secretary Eduardo M. Año issued the Memorandum Circular based on the request of the Philippine South East Asian Games Organizing Committee (Phisgoc) in a bid to alleviate traffic during the duration of the sporting meet.
Memorandum Circular No. 2019-198 states that class suspensions are necessary in order to lessen public inconvenience as a result of the anticipated heavy volume of traffic and the influx of people who will be coming from all over the Philippines and the Southeast Asian Region.
Based on the list provided and vetted by the SEA Games Security Task Force, Phisgoc and the Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA), the following schools are recommended for class suspensions from December 2 to 6:
Metro Manila – St. Paul College-Pasig, Poveda, De La Salle University, De La Salle College of St. Benilde, St. Scholastica’s College Manila, Arellano University School of Law-Manila, and Wesleyan College-Manila;
Southern Luzon Cluster – Tagaytay Science National High School, City College of Tagaytay, Polytechnic University of the Philippines, Sta. Rosa Science and Technology High School, Blessed Christian School de Santa Rosa, U.P. Los Baños, Christian School International, and San Antonio Elementary School;
Subic Cluster – Lyceum of Subic Bay Palm Tree, WOW Recreation and Activity Center, Mondriam Aura College, and College of Subic Bay Montessori-Subic Bay;
Clark Cluster – Systems Plus College Foundation and Angeles University Foundation.
Malaya said that mayors may also extend the class suspension to other schools or colleges in their respective jurisdictions should they see the need to do so.
“The DepEd or school authorities may also declare class suspensions on their own authority if they wish to do so,” he added.