Will government allow face-to-face classes?

Published July 16, 2020, 3:02 PM

by Genalyn Kabiling

The proposed limited face-to-face classes in areas under low-risk modified general community quarantine (MGCQ) will still undergo government study, Malacañang announced Thursday.


Presidential spokesman Harry Roque said President Duterte has asked the Department of Education (DepEd) and the Commission on Higher Education (CHEd) to submit their written proposal on limited physical classes before he makes a decision.

“May proposal na limited face to face. Hindi pa ‘yan mapapatupad hanggat hindi pa naaprubahan ng ating Presidente (There is a proposal for limited face-to-face classes but that will not be implement until the President approves it),” Roque said during a Palace press briefing.

“Pinag-aaralan pa rin po natin. May proposals po na sinumite ang Commission on Higher Education at DepEd pero ang sabi po ni Presidente, isubmit mo sa amin ang written proposals at nang madiscuss ng mas mabuti ‘yan (We are studying it. There is a proposal submitted by the Commission on Higher Education and DepEd but the President asked them to submit the written proposals so it can be further discussed),” he added.

Education authorities have proposed allowing limited physical classes in areas under MGCQ where there is low risk of coronavirus transmission during a meeting with Duterte Wednesday.

CHEd chairman Prospero de Vera III said they have asked colleges and universities to move the laboratory subjects and other classes that require physical presence of students to second semester. Education Secretary Leonor Briones also discussed the proposed limited classroom classes in MGCQ areas if blended learning is not possible.

Health Secretary Francisco Duque III has endorsed the proposal for limited physical classes in low-risk MGCQ areas, particularly limiting the number of students to 10 in a classroom. The schools must also implement other health protocols such as distancing rule and separate entry and exit pathways to curb any transmission.

The schools must be inspected for compliance of health standards if the limited classes are allowed, according to chief implementer of the government’s pandemic response Carlito Galvez Jr.