2 senators hit ‘pathetic’ DepEd pace in resuming physical classes | Inquirer News
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2 senators hit ‘pathetic’ DepEd pace in resuming physical classes

/ 06:12 PM August 25, 2021

MANILA, Philippines—Some senators have expressed frustration over the supposed lack of urgency of the Department of Education (DepEd) in holding limited physical classes in areas at low risk for COVID-19.

“From my impression, why does it seem that there’s no sense of urgency?” said Sen. Nancy Binay at a Senate hearing on Wednesday (Aug. 25).

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She said it was in contrast with the tourism department’s enthusiasm in opening the industry.

Education Undersecretary Nepomuceno Malaluan said the Inter-Agency Task Force for Infectious and Emerging Diseases (IATF) had already approved a joint circular of the DepEd and Department of Health (DOH) for holding limited physical classes.

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At least 100 schools were seen to join the dry run for the start of physical classes seen to take place in September.

President Rodrigo Duterte, who had previously rejected proposals for limited face-to-face classes, has yet to approve the plan. The DepEd has yet to present the plans to the President.

Sen. Pia Cayetano said the Philippines was one of the few remaining countries that have yet to conduct face-to-face classes amid the pandemic.

“We need to be proactive about this,” said Cayetano.

“Despite the Delta, we have to be able to live with this. If it was just the US and Europe who were able to send their kids to school, then I would be a little less adamant in getting our kids to physical school,” she said.

“But it’s basically the whole world, except 14 of us. We really have to be able to work around this,” she added.

Binay and Cayetano also pressed the DepEd why the plan was not yet presented to Duterte.

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“We’re not saying there’s no effort from you,” Binay said. “We’re just saying we don’t see it. So we are concerned if you’re rallying the way that other agencies are rallying for their constituents?”

“What you’re telling us, the President should have been first before us,” she said. “At the end of the day, he will make the decision.”

“If he doesn’t know what you will implement, he would surely say no face-to-face classes,” said Binay.

Cayetano said: “That rollout is so slow and pathetic if you ask me. Sorry, but you’re really lagging behind.”

Since the start of the pandemic in 2020, students and teachers have adjusted to distance-learning setups.

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TAGS: Department of Education, distance learning, face-to-face classes
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