DepEd urged to rollout ‘limited, very controlled’ pilot testing of in-person classes

Robie de Guzman   •   March 1, 2021   •   328

MANILA, Philippines – Senator Sonny Angara has urged the Department of Education (DepEd) to consider conducting a pilot testing of face-to-face classes in areas with very few or zero COVID-19 cases to see how this will work.

Angara said that while he supports calls for the resumption of limited in-person classes, it would be best to conduct a dry-run in areas where physical distancing and other health protocols can be strictly observed.

“Gusto natin maibalik ang face-to-face classes pero be that as it may nagsalita na din si Presidente (Rodrigo Duterte) na bastat walang bakuna ayaw niya mag upisa ng face-to-face classes nationwide,” Angara said in a statement on Sunday.

“Kung sakali, bago tayo mag umpisa ng nationwide rollout ng face-to-face classes, pumili tayo ng isa o dalawang probinsya muna para sa pilot testing,” Angara added.

The pilot areas should also have strong health systems that would be able to handle possible outbreaks in case of “super spreader” events.

“Kailangan ang lugar na yun ay walang masyadong kaso at handa ang kanyang health system kung sakaling magkaroon ng super spreader event,” he said.

Angara said the local government units that will be part of the pilot testing should ensure they have health facilities such as hospitals that are capable of handling a large number of cases–from isolation to treatment.

“Kung i-rollout ng DepEd itong face-to-face classes ay maingat at limitado talaga, under very controlled conditions muna,” Angara said.

Some senators have earlier pushed to reduce the number of schools participating in the dry-run.

Instead of 1,065 as initially proposed by the DepEd, lawmakers want the program be conducted in 500 or lower number of schools with smaller number of students.

The proposal aims to gather local evidence on the safe resumption of face-to-face classes amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Angara stressed that any plan to resume face-to-face learning should be done with extreme caution since the risk of contracting COVID-19 still exists in the country.

He believes that the resumption of limited in-person classes would ease off a lot of stress and pressure on both the students and their parents who have been forced to cope with blended learning due to the pandemic.

DepEd encourages eligible personnel to register for COVID-19 vaccination

Aileen Cerrudo   •   April 22, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Education (DepEd) is encouraging its eligible personnel to register and get vaccinated for the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

This,  after the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID) approved the inclusion of education frontliners to the higher priority groups from category B1 to A4.

In a statement, Secretary Leonor Briones hopes to start vaccinating the rest of DepEd’s teaching and non-teaching personnel by June 2021 as part of the A4 priority list.

“We would like to encourage all of our personnel to coordinate with their local government units so they can be vaccinated against COVID-19. This will play a huge role in our bid for our learners’ return to school,” she said.

Vaccine recipients are also requested to note their vaccination details, including the registration and the vaccination card for documentation and monitoring purposes within DepEd.

Meanwhile, Briones also advised DepEd personnel to rely on credible and official sources such as the Department of Health (DOH) and LGU websites and social media accounts for accurate information about the COVID-19 pandemic, vaccines, and vaccination program.

“I am encouraging everyone to be proactive in learning about the vaccine and the vaccination program, and to make an informed choice about the matter,” she said. AAC

More than 790K teachers to be vaccinated vs COVID-19 in June — DepEd

Aileen Cerrudo   •   April 19, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Education (DepEd) said teachers get to have their turn to be vaccinated against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in June.

DepEd Secretary Leonor Briones reported that more than 790,000 public school teachers and personnel are set to receive the vaccination in June to protect teachers during school enrollment.

Siguro, mga June ito mag-umpisa. By that time, mag-start na ang enrollment, marami nang activities sa mga eskuwelahan. Kailangan protektado ang mga teacher (It might start around June because, by that time, enrollment and other activities will begin. We need to protect our teachers),” she said.

Briones said teachers and other education personnel will no longer need to register since the department already have a list for the vaccination program for education frontliners.

The Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) has previously approved the recommendation of DepEd to include education frontliners in the government’s A4 COVID-19 vaccination priority list from the B1 cluster. AAC 

DepEd welcomes IATF decision to include education frontliners in A4 priority vaccination group

Aileen Cerrudo   •   April 16, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Education (DepEd) expressed its gratitude to the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) for including education frontliners in the A4 priority vaccination group.

In a statement on Friday (April 16), DepEd Secretary Leonor Briones is thankful to the IATF for approving their recommendation to include teachers and other education frontliners.

“As reiterated by the President, vaccination is a key component of any roadmap to the resumption of face-to-face classes. With the adjustment of vaccine prioritization (from B1 to A4) for basic education frontliners, we can speed up the rollout of vaccines among our teachers and non-teaching staff,” DepEd said.

DepEd also reiterated its commitment to continuously protect the health and safety of teachers, learners and non-teaching personnel, and prioritize their welfare at this critical time. AAC

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