Two-month vacation vital to stressed-out, weary distance learners – Gatchalian

Published March 6, 2021, 6:00 PM

by Mario Casayuran

Senator Sherwin Gatchalian on Saturday, March 6 said he favors a two-month vacation for learners reeling from the stresses of a distance learning procedure.


Gatchalian, chairman of the Senate basic education committee, said a two-month break from constant learning would allow learners ‘’family time’’ and for them to see their friends.

Asked during a Laging Handa program of PTV4 about a decision of the Department of Education (DepEd) to shorten learners’ vacation time, Gatchalian said he prefers a longer teaching time because many learners need remedial lessons and this would help them in their classes.

He pointed to the first two months of the current school year affected by the COVID-19 pandemic ‘’as adjustment period.’’

Gatchalian said the added hours in a longer teaching time would benefit both the students and the teachers themselves.

On the two-month vacation break, Gatchalian said this is needed by learners because they have undergone stresses while attending classes.

‘’Marami sa mga dalubhasa, nakita nila na marami sa mga bata ang stressed sa kanilang tahanan at itong break na ito dapat ho i-maintain natin ang two-month break (Many experts see that many learners are stressed in their houses and this two-month break should be maintained),’’ he pointed out.

Gatchalian said his committee would study whether a performance rating by the Department of Education (DepEd) that 99 percent of learners passed the first quarter of this school year is ‘’accurate.’’

‘’Ito ang pinakamahalagang tanong, natututo ba ang ating mga mag-aaral sa loob po ng distance learning (The important question is – did students learn in this distance learning {procedure}?’’ he asked.

Gatchalian said that before the COVID=19 pandemic hit the country, the result of the National Achievement Test (NAT) is very low, at 40 to 50 percent. He said he is surprised that the result now is 99 percent.

Gatchalian maintained that there should be a real assessment to determine where a learner is weak.

He said he does not favor passing all the learners because the ‘’flunkers’’ would certainly not pass in the next grade.

Gatchalian also pointed to reports that there is a ‘’Sagot for Sale’’ where enterprising persons offer their modules to poor-performing students so they could pass their tests.