Public and private schools can push through with their graduation rites provided that they are able to implement strictly the Department of Health’s (DOH) guidelines on social distancing to prevent the spread of coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).
In a press briefing at the SEAMEO Innotech in Quezon City, Education Secretary Leonor Briones said the Department of Education (DepEd) trusts the schools and parents that they will observe the social distancing measures amid the continuing threat of Covid-19.
“Kasi sabi ng DOH, iko-control ang mass gathering, halimbawa, kung maliit ang eskwelahan, magsabi sila ang isang graduating student ay entitled only to one parent or guest, at kung malaki ang school, kasi may mga schools na libo-libo ang mag-ga-graduate, (The DOH said to control mass gathering, example, if the school is small, it must instruct their graduating students that each of them is entitled to only one parent or guest, and if the school is big, because there are schools with thousands of graduates) batch by batch,” Briones said.
Briones said this is why schools were instructed to schedule their graduation rites for an entire week.
Briones said the DepEd is aware of instances where private schools decide to hold online classes since President Rodrigo Duterte approved the suspension of classes in all levels in the National Capital Region from March 10 to 14.
“Online classes, yes, that’s okay, in fact, later, our Undersecretary for Administration will demonstrate the use of our online learning resources. Whatever innovation that can be used, we’ll allow it, we just have to be informed and should we stop others from using technology,” she added.
Meanwhile, DepEd Undersecretary Nepomuceno Malaluan said teachers are instructed to give pointers for review for learners who were supposed to have their final exams on Thursday and Friday.
“Teachers can schedule their exams on a staggard basis, iyong iba ay puwede sa Lunes, Martes, Miyerkules para consistent pa rin tayo sa (others could be on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday so we’re consistent with the) social distancing measures. In the event of sustained community transmission, Code Red sub level 2, since we’re near the end of the school year, there’ already enough basis to give the learners grades in the absence of a final test,” Malaluan said.
He added that the DepEd is having a discussion on the transmutation that will be used for the final grades of the learners if they are unable to take the final exams. (PNA)