Nationwide pilot implementation of limited face-to-face classes start today, Nov. 15

100 public schools, at least 20 private schools participating;  health protocols assured



(Eagle News) — The pilot implementation of the limited face-to-face classes in areas identified as low-risk for COVID-19 started today, Monday, November 15, with the participation of 100 public schools nationwide.

On Wednesday, the Department of Education (DepEd) said it had formally listed the 100 public schools nationwide that will participate in the pilot implementation of the limited face-to-face classes.

“All set na for November 15. Nabuo na natin ‘yong 100 public schools at binubuo na ngayon ang 20 private schools… Nakuha natin ang consent ng local governments. Ni-require din natin na ang mga parents ay dapat magbigay ng kanilang written consent,” DepEd Secretary Leonor Magtolis Briones said in an earlier Laging Handa Public Briefing.

According to DepEd’s Field Operations strand, there will be 10 participating schools from Ilocos Region, 10 from Central Luzon, five from CALABARZON, and nine from Bicol Region. Three public schools from Western Visayas will participate in the pilot implementation, eight from Central Visayas, and 10 schools from Eastern Visayas.

“The Zamboanga Peninsula, on the other hand, will be represented by eight public schools, 10 from Northern Mindanao, eight from Davao Region, five from SOCCSKSARGEN, and 14 from CARAGA,”

Undersecretary and Chief of Staff Nepomuceno Malaluan has started personally overseeing preparations on the ground since two weeks ago.

Briones said that that they have already inspected the schools that will participate in the pilot implementation. She said that these schools should be near the health stations.

Briones said they will be strict on enforcing health and safety measures set for the pilot implementation of limited face-to-face classses.

Education Secretary Leonor Briones

Kami naman, for our part sa DepEd, ini-inspect namin ang mga napipiling eskwelahan na kailangang handa ang facilities, masisiguro ang social distancing, mayroong tubig at gamot, at malapit sa health stations,” Briones said.

DepEd Assistant Secretary for Field Operations and National Academy of Sports Malcolm Garma said that the final list for private schools is still in process, and 57 applicants are still under evaluation. The agency will release the official list for private schools on November 15.

Briones assured that the school staff who would handle and take part in the limited face-to-face classes nationwide have been fully vaccinated.

She said that DepEd has high vaccination numbers of school staff nationwide, including those teaching and non-teaching personnel in participating schools.

“Very high ang vaccination status. Napakataas kasi summer pa, wala pa iyong approval ng President [for face-to-face], ay sinabihan na namin ang aming teachers na makikilahok sila,” she said.

Briones said that they will also regularly update President Rodrigo Duterte regarding the implementation of limited face-to-face classes.

“DepEd will implement face-to-face [classes] with safety measures in place. We have been instructed to implement face-to-face whether it is 70 [schools] or 30 or 100, or eventually the entire school system, we will implement face-to-face. We will be reporting updates regularly to the President and the general public,” she said.

The DepEd chief also ensured coordination with the National Task Force for COVID-19 to fast-track the vaccination of the personnel nationwide.

(Eagle News Service)