The Department of Education (DepEd)-Region 2 (Cagayan Valley) confirmed Thursday that 10 secondary teachers in Ilagan City, Isabela tested positive for COVID-19 but clarified that they did not contract the disease while distributing modules.
Contrary to reports that 11 teachers have tested positive for COVID-19 in Ilagan City, Regional Director Estela Cariño clarified that “10 teachers in a secondary school in the city underwent a swab test and all tested positive.”
Cariño, in a clarificatory statement, said that one of the teachers – who was the first to be infected – is currently confined at the San Antonio quarantine facility “since she did not manifest any symptom.”
The other nine, she explained, are all “asymptomatic” and presently contained at the city’s quarantine facility in Alibagu to complete their 14-day quarantine.
The School Division Office of the City of Ilagan clarified that “such unfortunate event has nothing to do whatsoever with the distribution of Self-Learning Modules (SLMs) or any materials to that effect.”
Cariño said that the localized Basic Education Learning Continuity Plan of the SDO “clearly states that the SLMs shall be deposited at the drop-off points” at the barangay halls. “The barangay officials, tasked as knowledge bearers, did the distribution of the SLMs,” she added.
During a Palace briefing Tuesday, Education Secretary Leonor Briones maintained that teachers are currently under the work-from-home scheme. “In areas where they are not allowed to go out, we don’t ask teachers to be going around,” she said.
In August, DepEd said 823 personnel – including teachers and non-teaching staff – and students have contracted COVID-19. Of this number, 310 are active cases, 490 have recovered and 23 have died.
Despite the growing number of COVID-19 cases within the agency, Briones assured that “every precaution is always undertaken” by the concerned units.