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‘Either physically or virtually’ DepEd says classes to open on August 24

Students use their hands to cover their heads as they evacuate their school premises after an earthquake of magnitude 6.2 hit the northern island of Luzon and was felt in the Metro Manila, Philippines August 11, 2017, shaking buildings and forcing the evacuation of offices and schools. REUTERS/Romeo Ranoco

Opening of classes for this school year will be moved from June to August as the country continuously battle to curb the spread of deadly coronavirus disease (COVID-19), said the Department of Education(DepEd).

In a virtual press briefing, Education Secretary Leonor Briones said the classes are scheduled to start on August 24 and is expected to end on April 30, 2021. She said the decision to move the classes was based on consultations with various stakeholders and on a survey involving 700,000 respondents.

“Ang napili nating school opening date ay August 24,” Briones said.

However, she clarified that it’s not necessary for teachers and students to report physically to schools given the implemented quarantine protocols in some areas with risks of respiratory illness.

Briones stated that the department will implement various teaching approaches to students, such as technology-mediated learning through computers and cellphones, the use of media like television and radio, and other offline methods.

“Puwedeng virtual, puwede ring physical sa mga lugar na ina-allow ang physical na pagbukas ng eskuwelahan,” she said, adding that teachers would have to report for work starting June 1 to prepare for the upcoming school year.

The Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Disease has been informed of the school opening date, Briones added.

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