During a senate session, DepEd officials were advised about the possibility of moving the reopening of classes under RA.11840.
Moving the reopening of classes past August
During an online conference last Monday, the Department of Education Secretary Leonor Briones stood firm on the decision that August 24 will be the final schedule for the reopening of schools in the Philippines.
This is despite numerous complains and objections from activists and student groups in the country.
The decision of Briones is based on RA 7797 which regulates the time frame on which classes in the Philippines should start. The law states that classes are allowed to start as early as the first Monday of June or not later than the last day of August.
However, during a session on the senate, with Undersecretary Tonisito Umali representing the legislative branch of the Department of Education, senators mentioned about the existence of another law that bypasses the restrictions imposed on RA 7797.
Signed by the President last July 20, the RA 11840 gives the President authority of moving the reopening of classes in the Philippines, with the recommendation from the Department of Education, in case of a national emergency.
Some parts of the country under MECQ
Senators reminded the department that certain cities in the Luzon area are still in MECQ. With this, moving the reopening of classes proves to be the better option to ensure the safety of teachers, school staff and students.
In response, Undersecretary Nepomuceno Malaluan assured the senators that the safety and health of the teachers are still the top priority. According to Malaluan, the department is constantly monitoring the COVID situation in the country, it will adjust its guidelines regarding the reopening of schools if it suits best the situation.
Featured image: Official Gazette