By Merlina Hernando-Malipot
“Worry no more.”
The Department of Education (DepEd) assured concerned learners and parents that final grades will still be given despite the cancellation of the conduct of fourth quarter examination in areas where classes were suspended due to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).
DepEd announced that public schools covered by class suspensions will no longer be required to hold final examinations for their learners.
Education Secretary Leonor Briones issued new guidelines, specifically citing that the fourth quarter examinations - scheduled from March 16 to 20 - “will no longer be administered” because of the COVID-19 threat in schools where classes are cancelled.
The newly-issued memorandum also includes directives for end-of-school-year rites and grading or transmutation formula as well as online alternative learning delivery option.
“Further academic requirements, if any, shall be done as home-based assignments,” Briones said the DepEd memo no. 42 s. 2020 or the “Guidelines for the Remainder of School Year 2019-2020 in light of the COVID-19 measures.”
As announced by President Duterte earlier, classes in all levels in Metro Manila schools have been suspended until April 14. Other provinces and towns which recorded confirmed cases of COVID-19 also declared suspension of classes.
DepEd explained that the week of March 16-20 was designated as the examinations week in all schools for any remaining fourth quarter examinations.
“Schools should schedule these on staggered basis during the said week, in order to maximize and abide by social distancing protocols” of the Department of Health (DOH). Students shall only come to school scheduled on stagger on the day of their respective examination schedules,” DepEd added.
However, DepEd clarified that, in areas where classes have been suspended by relevant national of local authorities which covers the exam week and “thus preventing the holding” of the said exams, the fourth quarter examination “will no longer be administered”.
DepEd noted that the affected schools shall apply the “grading formula” prescribed by the agency for the “computation of the final grades for the fourth quarter.”
How will the grades be computed?
Based on the newly-issued guidelines, DepEd said that for schools or classes prevented from administering the fourth quarter exams, a specific set of grading and transmutation formula “shall be adopted for the evaluation of the final grades in the affected learners.”
DepEd noted that the its DO No. 8 s. of 2015 or the Policy Guidelines in Classroom Assessment for the K to 12 Basic Education Program “shall still be the basis in computing the Fourth Quarter grade of learners” except that it will be “based on class standing (CS) composed of written works and performance tasks.”
For all learning areas for Grades 1 -10 and non-core subjects in the Technical-Vocational-Livelihood/ Sports/ Arts and Design track in Senior High School (SHS), CS totals “80 percent in the original formula.”
Thus, upon “computing the weighted score in each component, the CS grade will be transmuted” using the prescribed table of DepEd to get the fourth quarter grade.
DepEd said that for all core subjects in the Academic Track of SHS, the CS totals to 70 percent in the original formula. “Upon computing the weighted score in each component, the CS will be transmuted” to get the fourth quarter grade. DepEd has already issued a sample computation for the guidance of teachers.
Meanwhile, Briones also reiterated her reminder for affected learners “to not go to crowded places despite the suspension of classes.”
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