Briones to push anew face-to-face classes in areas with zero Covid

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Education Secretary Leonor Briones said she will propose anew to President Rodrigo Roa Duterte and to the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Disease the resumption of limited face-to-face classes in areas with zero cases of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).

In a virtual press conference, Briones said she is inclined to request again to the President next week to reconsider the pilot testing for the limited face-to-face, at least in areas where there are low or zero Covid cases.

The President last approved the Department of Education’s proposal to allow limited face-to-face classes in areas with low-risk Covid-19 infection but this was recalled when new variants of the virus were discovered in other countries, particularly from the UK.

“There are areas in the country, including some islands and remote towns of Cagayan Valley, that do not have any case of Covid-19 so maybe they can do limited face-to-face but it is only the President who can decide to whether we can do face-to-face or not,” Briones said.

She said limited face-to-face in areas without or with minimal cases is supposed to be part of the blended learning strategies. However, it is the least priority as the department’s top most priority is the safety and health of the children.

“We listen to the proposals on academic ease but not for academic freeze. Our children should continue learning. We will devise all possible means so that they will be behind in the pursuit of their dreams to finish their studies,” Briones said.

She also urged parents and children to bear with the current situation, especially the modular mode of learning, amid reports that there still students who are still adjusting to the new mode.

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