Loose ends notwithstanding, DepEd says they are ready for Oct. 5 school opening

There are still loose ends that need to be tied up but the Department of Education (DepEd) says they are ready for the opening of classes in public schools for school year 2020-2021 on Oct. 5.

Education Secretary Leonor Briones

Education Secretary Leonor Briones, in a virtual press briefing on Sept. 9, gave updates on the opening of SY 2020-2021 less than a month from now.

“It’s not as if we will just start classes on Oct. 5 without preparations because -- more or less -- we now know the challenges and we’re addressing these,” she said.

To ensure the health and safety of teachers and students amid the ongoing COVID-19 situation in the country, DepEd will open the school year next month without in-person or face-to-face classes on all basic education levels.

DepEd will implement a blended and distance learning approach through the use of various learning delivery modalities such as modular (both printed and digitized), online, and television or radio-based instruction. All of these are guided by the Basic Education-Learning Continuity Plan (BE-LCP) of DepEd which, Briones said, is not a “one-size-fits-all” policy.

Since the circumstances and resources of schools vary, DepEd allowed its Regional Offices (ROs) and Schools Division Offices (SDOs) to “contextualize” the BE-LCP. Depending the choices of the parents and students -- as well as the capability and resources of the schools -- chools may combine or “blend” two or more modalities that suit the needs of the students.

To assess the effectiveness and accessibility of the chosen learning modalities, Briones said that all field offices are required to conduct dry-runs for the opening of classes. “These dry-runs reflect the readiness of the field offices in conducting classes throughout the whole school year,” she explained.

Briones said that as of Sept. 7, 31,050 schools have accomplished their dry-runs before Aug. 24. There are 11, 698 schools scheduled to conduct their dry-runs before Oct. 5.