Gatchalian: Vaccination of teachers, students key to resumption of face-to-face classes

Published June 22, 2021, 10:14 AM

by Hannah Torregoza 

Senator Sherwin Gatchalian on Tuesday, June 22 maintained that the key to the resumption of face-to-face classes is getting teachers and students inoculated against the coronavirus disease or COVID-19.

Gatchalian, who chairs the Senate Committee on Basic Education, Arts and Culture, said he sees the national vaccination program as the only way for the country’s education sector to move forward.

“That’s why, my appeal to the parents and our teachers: let’s get vaccinated and let’s not be anxious about the available vaccines given by our local government,” Gatchalian said in Filipino in an interview over Radio DWIZ.

“Let’s get inoculated because that’s the only way we can return to face-to-face classes. If many of us will get vaccinated, especially our teachers. That would be very good because we can return to face-to-face classes,” he said.

Likewise, the senator appealed to the government to study the feasibility of vaccinating teenagers as some countries are already inoculating their younger population.

“That is one of things, I wish the government would do as quickly as possible,” he said.

“Many countries, like the United States, have started vaccinating their teenagers. Here in our country, if there are any available vaccines fit for them, they should start inoculating teens,” Gatchalian pointed out.

He further said he is certain that schools can pursue face-to-face classes should 50 percent of the population have already been successfully inoculated by the fourth quarter of this year.

“America was already back to the streets partying when it was able to vaccinate 30 percent of their population. They were already celebrating at 30 percent vaccination rate,” the lawmaker noted.

“So, I think, based in my observation, we can do the same if we are able to achieve 40 to 50 percent vaccination rate. By then we can resume face-to-face classes,” he reiterated. [Hannah L. Torregoza]