By Leslie Ann Aquino
With the prevailing coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, the head of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines Episcopal Commission on Youth said “safety first” should be paramount when deciding on the issue of school opening.
“For me, the principle ‘safety first’ is paramount. This consideration is critical to deciding when schools should open,” Bishop Rex Andrew Alarcon of Daet said.
“I trust our officials will be guided by this principle and by scientific data, as we continue to implore the help of the Almighty,” he added.
Since the pandemic is a collective problem, the prelate said the decision, as well as the decision-making is also a communal thing.
“The decision is a communal thing means since the pandemic is a collective problem, solutions and decisions are a collective responsibility,” said Alarcon.
“It is a situation where the non-cooperation of one, poses a danger to all. As WHO says, ‘nobody is safe unless everybody is safe,'” he added.
Department of Education Secretary Leonor Briones had earlier said that they are looking at August as the possible opening of classes amid the COVID-19 crisis.
She said they are also considering Saturday classes which will not be face-to-face.