Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go, Senate health and demography committee chair, is urging the education sector to ensure all students are afforded equal opportunity under the new learning modality.
“Siguraduhin natin na lahat ng mga estudyante ay mabibigyan ng pantay na oportunidad sa ilalim ng ating learning continuity plan in all levels of education (Let’s ensure that all the students will be given fair opportunity under our learning continuity plan in all levels of education),’’ he said during a Senate hearing of the Committee on Higher, Technical, and Vocational Education.
“Despite the current health crisis, our aim is to ease the burden for our students and also their families,” he added.
The usual face-to-face mode of teaching in schools is now to be done electronically through the use of computers or laptops as a result of the negative effects of coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
Go is worried some students lack access to stable internet connectivity. More, he is also worried about those who are barely making ends meet trying to catch up with the technological needs to cope with the new learning modality.
“Marami pa rin sa ating mga mag-aaral ang mahihirap at naghahanap ng paraan para maitawid ang kanilang mga nagugutom na sikmura habang nag-aaral. Ano pa ngayong may pandemya na? Ibig sabihin, mas mahirap po ang sitwasyon ngayon (There are still a lot of students who are poor and they’re trying to find ways to feed themselves while studying. What more under this pandemic? Their situation now is more difficult),’’ he added.
“Aminin nating marami sa ating mag-aaral in the tertiary and higher education ay mga working students. Naghahanap-buhay sila para may pangtustos sa pang-araw araw na gastos (Let's admit, most of our students in the tertiary and higher education are working students. They’re working to sustain their daily expenses),’’ he added.
Go urged concerned agencies to take these issues in consideration while trying to ensure that education continues despite the health crisis.
“This is so that we can continue to improve our education system and bridge the gaps of learning without giving more stress mentally, emotionally and financially,” he added.
The senator from Davao reiterated his stand that no face-to-face traditional classes should be conducted while there is still no vaccine for COVID-19.
“Iyan rin po ang stand ng ating Pangulo. Aanhin po natin ang another year level, kung magkakasakit naman ang mga bata? (That is also the stand of our President. What use do we have in earning another year level, if the children will be at risk of getting sick?)"
‘’We all understand the importance of education. Yet, we must also remind ourselves that, above all, the right to live must be of utmost priority."