Classes to resume in typhoon-hit provinces by January, says DepEd chief


09:40 PM December 16th, 2012

By: Dona Z. Pazzibugan, December 16th, 2012 09:40 PM

Education Secretary Armin Luistro. INQUIRER FILE PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines — Classes will resume in typhoon-devastated areas by January 2013 despite the extensive loss of lives and property, according to Education Secretary Armin Luistro.

Thousands of displaced students from at least 445 public schools that sustained major damage from the typhoon will hold classes in tents.

Education Secretary Armin Luistro said those schools that have reopened have been concentrating on stress debriefing and relief efforts in the meantime.

“Our plan is to reopen formal schooling in January,” Luistro said.

“The lesson from (typhoon) Sendong is that the earliest we resume (classes), the better it is to rebuild their lives,” he explained.

The Department of Education (DepEd) reported that 95 per cent of public schools in Compostela Valley were destroyed.

At least 877 classrooms were “washed out,” half of which were in Baganga, Davao Oriental while 355 other classrooms were damaged, the DepEd said.

“We’ve sent ‘tent classrooms’ before the Christmas break we want to begin classes even if there’s no physical school,” Luistro said.

“By asking them to come to school, we can account for the survivors so we can concentrate on stress debriefing,” he added.

In Baganga, Davao Oriental, at least 132 public schools were damaged while 444 classrooms were washed out.

In other towns in the province,  26 schools were damaged and 298 classrooms destroyed in Cateel; 12 schools and 96 classrooms in Boston; 27 schools and 31 classrooms in in Caraga; and 23 schools and 21 classrooms in in Manay.

In Compostela Valley, at least 61 classrooms were washed out as 80 schools were reported damaged.

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