No more plans to shorten vacation to two weeks – DepEd

Published March 3, 2021, 12:20 PM

by Merlina Hernando-Malipot

After drawing flak on the plan to shorten the vacation break into two weeks, the Department of Education (DepEd) on Wednesday, March 3, confirmed that the proposal has been dropped already.

DepEd Undersecretary Diosdado San Antonio

DepEd Undersecretary for Curriculum and Instruction Diosdado San Antonio told reporters that he decided to withdraw a proposal to shorten the “summer” break into two weeks.

“It was among the many options we were considering but noting the objections from our stakeholders, we will no longer propose a two-week break,” he explained. San Antonio told the Manila Bulletin last month of DepEd’s plan to extend the school year (SY) 2020-2021.

In a separate television report, he was quoted as saying that the DepEd was eyeing the extension of the current school year, which, as result, may “shorten the two-month summer break into two weeks.”

This proposal from DepEd drew criticisms from netizens – including parents, teachers, students and youth groups.

On Tuesday, March 2, DepEd officially announced that the current school calendar will be adjusted.

Instead of June 11, the new last day of classes for SY 2020-2021 is scheduled on July 10. Signed by Education Secretary Leonor Briones, the DepEd Order No. 012, s. 2021 entitled “Amendment to DepEd Order No. 030, s. 2020 (Amendment to DepEd Order No. 007, s. 2020, School Calendar and Activities for School Year 2020-2021)” indicated the changes and adjustments in the current school year to “allow schools to “implement intensive intervention and remediation activities for learners and to give time to teachers for the different learning delivery modalities.”

DepEd advised teachers, parents, and learners to take note of the amendments to the school calendar including the intervention and remediation activities for learners scheduled starting March 1 to 12; In-Service Training (INSET) for teachers and school break for learners starting March 15 to 19; start of Quarter 3 from March 22 to May 15, 2021 and start of Quarter 4 from May 17 to July 10, 2021.

However, DepEd clarified that this policy is for “all public elementary and secondary schools” only. Private schools, technical and vocational institutions, and higher education institutions – including state and local universities and colleges offering the K to 12 Basic Education Program – were highly “encouraged” to implement these guidelines as well.