By Genalyn Kabiling
Only online curricular and co-curricular activities of students will be allowed when the 2020-2021 school year officially opens this August, Malacañang said Monday.
According to presidential spokesman Harry Roque, campus journalism, school sports, job fairs, and activities that involve large gatherings have been cancelled as a precaution against the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
The decision was reached by the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF) after adopting the basic education learning continuity plan presented by the Department of Education (DepEd).
“The conduct of curricular and co-curricular activities involving gatherings such as science fairs, showcase of portfolios, trade fairs, school sports, campus journalism, festival of talents, job fairs, and other similar activities is cancelled except those conducted online,” the task force said in Resolution No. 34.
In the same resolution released by the Palace Monday, the IATF has approved the DepEd’s proposal to move the opening of classes for basic education on August 24, 2020. The school year will end on April 30, 2021.
Private schools will be allowed to open provided there are no face-to-face classes earlier than August 24, according to Roque.
From August 24, face-to-face learning shall only be allowed when the local risk severity grading permits and subject to compliance with minimum health standards.
Roque said the IATF also adopted different learning delivery modes such as face-to-face, blended learning, distance learning, and homeschooling and other modes of deliveries. The alternative education modes will be implemented depending on the local COVID risk severity classification and compliance with health protocols.
The latest changes in the learning system have been proposed in a bid to protect students from the spread of the coronavirus disease.
Classes have been suspended since March when the government implemented the enhanced community quarantine in Metro Manila and several areas to contain the outbreak.
Under Republic Act No. 7797 that lengthened the school calendar from 200 class days to not more than 220 days, the school year must start on the first Monday of June but not later than the last day of August.
Classes in public schools usually open every June while some private schools resume classes either in July or August.