Youth group welcomes CHED’s plan to hold limited in-person classes for all degree programs

Published October 16, 2021, 3:52 PM

by Merlina Hernando-Malipot

(MARK BALMORES / FILE PHOTO / MANILA BULLETIN)

It’s about time.

This is the response of the National Union of Students of the Philippines (NUSP) as it welcomed the plan of the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) to conduct limited face-to-face classes for all degree programs in areas with low cases of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) and with high vaccination rate.

“In response, the Union continues to clamor and campaign for more efficient vaccination programs, thorough observance of health guidelines for limited face-to-face classes, and the rechanneling of funds from unnecessary state agencies like NTF-ELCAC towards educational institutions that desperately need the funding in preparation for a safe opening of limited face-to-face classes,” NUSP National President Jandeil Roperos said.

Based on several factors and the overall public health situation, CHED on Oct. 13 said that limited face-to-face classes might be a possibility in all degree programs by the first quarter of 2022.

READ:

Limited face-to-face classes in all degree programs possible by 'early next year' — CHED

In a virtual press briefing on Oct. 11, CHED Chairperson Popoy De Vera said that the Commission is are studying the implementation of limited face-to-face classes in all degree programs that have “very low COVID-19 prevalence and also a very high vaccination rate.”

Since January, only students taking up Medicine and Allied Health Science are allowed to attend limited face-to-face classes.

READ:

21,000 students in 181 universities, colleges attend limited face-to-face classes — CHED

Last month, CHED said that limited in-person activities have been expanded in engineering and technology programs, hospitality/hotel and restaurant management, tourism/ travel management, marine engineering, and marine transportation

READ:

Limited face-to-face classes now expanded to other degree programs, CHED says

However, NUSP said that expressing plans to open limited face-to-face classes for all degrees is “still just a plan.”

“Continuing efforts to ensure that this intent will materialize shall be sustained — with the full mindfulness of who are at stake,” it added.

Along with with Kabataan Partylist and other progressive organizations, NUSP crafted a roadmap of plans for the safe conduct of limited face-to-face classes.

“Our clamor for the safe and gradual resumption of physical classes through the course of action that the CHED will take in its plans to open classes will be enforced to eye for the policies that would best serve the interest of the students and teachers alike, who continue to struggle under this failed distance learning setup,” Roperos said.

NUSP added that with the intent to open limited face-to-face classes, the intent of providing enough funding must also be pushed to help universities in improving the necessary facilities which are imperative to the current health situation, like handwashing stations, health clinics, and clean running water to name a few.

“Most importantly, the continuous call for the national and local government to respond accordingly and work in full cooperation with academic institutions in ensuring the safety and health of the students is a prerequisite that we must not overlook before such plans happen,” Roperos said.

“Providing quality and free vaccination programs, more aggressive contact tracing, comprehensive mass testing, and other requisites stipulated in the crafted roadmap can be observed as concrete indicators for CHED and the education sector,” Roperos ended.

 
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