Face to face learning possible in remote areas, says DepEd official
MANILA, Philippines — Face-to-face learning may be applied in far-flung areas in the country since these are most likely safer from the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), a Department of Education (DepEd) official said on Monday.
“In far-flung areas, most likely the environment will be safe so the blended approach which has a face-to-face component would most likely be happening in very remote areas where nobody actually has been in touch with a possible COVID-19 carrier,” DepEd Undersecretary Diosdado San Antonio said in an interview on ABS-CBN News Channel.
San Antonio said teachers in remote areas may opt to personally visit their students since some of the learners may not have access to gadgets for online classes.
“I think that would be the mode but assuming that there won’t be face to face learning, the self-learning modules in print will be used and the teachers—because I am very familiar with the setup in far-flung areas—the teachers can just visit the homes of the learners one after the other if the schools cannot open and then guide the learners,” he added.
He pointed out that DepEd should implement alternative learning modes which were not practiced before the COVID-19 pandemic to ensure the continuity of education despite the pandemic.
“These may not be as efficient or effective as the traditional way we have been doing things but we feel that an offer of an option for learning to continue is there,” he said.
In areas where parents are not confident enough to teach their children, San Antonio said there could be some volunteers and “highly civic-spirited people” in the community who may be willing to facilitate the teaching for students.
DepEd scheduled the opening of School Year 2020 to 2021 on August 24, but Education Secretary Leonor Briones said there would be “no face-to-face classes until safe” and that schools will reopen but under alternative teaching modes.
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