Senate approves bill on 2nd reading allowing PRRD to reschedule the class opening beyond August.
Wednesday – The Senate approved on second reading an amendatory bill that seeks to give President Rodrigo Duterte the authority to reschedule the opening of classes beyond August.
Senate Bill No. 1541 seeks to amend Republic Act 7797 which currently states that the school year in the country may open as early as the first Monday of June but not later than the last day of August.
This proposed measure will empower the President, upon recommendation of the Secretary of Education, to reschedule the opening of classes in the entire country or in selected affected areas during states of calamity or emergency.
This shall cover all basic education schools, including foreign or international schools.
Once enacted into law, this measure will allow Duterte to push back the start of the school year at any date, considering the COVID-19 situation in the country.
According to Jacqueline Ong of Novaliches High School, “Sa public school, mahirap magwork ‘yung online kasi una sa lahat, marami sa mga estudyante na iyong pamasahe at baon nga pino-problema nila. How do we expect these students and their families to even have an internet and computers at home?”
“Face-to-face learning remains the most effective tool but the primary concern now is safety. In doing this “new normal” method, the number one challenge is the internet connection as well as the laptop/computers to be used by both students and teachers,” she added.
Valentina Sevilla of Muzon National High School said that while public school teachers have always found ways to maximize the limited government resources, the new normal presents more challenges.
“Puwede iyang new normal kasi mahirap rin isapalaran ang buhay ng mga estudyante. Pero sa public school, mahirap talaga kasi hindi lahat may gadget at internet connection. Depende pa nga sa lugar kung malakas ang signal,” she said.
“Also, dressmaking ang tinuturo ko. Paano kaya iyon [sa new normal na may online]? E iyong pagtututo ng horticulture? Kaya nag-iisip nga kami talaga paano ang gagawing approach ngayon. Willing naman kaming sumubok ng mga bagay-bagay. Mahirap, pero gagawan namin ng paraan. Hindi nga lang sigurado kung ito ay magiging successful,” she added.
Theresa Lazaro-Ordoñez, a college instructor of Bulacan State University, also said that the government should address first the access to internet connection and tablet before pushing through with the opening of classes by August 24.
“Feasible naman ‘yung “new normal”. Siyempre, nagbabago ang panahon eh. Mahirap, pero kayang mag-train, makakapag-adjust ang mga kawani. Pero dapat gawing sentro ‘yung issue ng accessibility,” Lazaro-Ordoñez said.
“Para kanino ba ang edukasyon? Ano bang goals ng education? Baka naliligaw na sila,” she added.
The three teachers shared the President’s sentiments that safety comes first.
“The school opening should be postponed until the vaccine is available to all,” Ong said.
“Walang papasok hangga’t walang vaccine against COVID-19. Tigilan na natin ‘iyong ilusyon na kakayanin ng health sector natin ang additional risks sa pagtaas ng COVID-19 cases,” Lazaro-Ordoñez added.
Senate approves bill on 2nd reading allowing PRRD to reschedule the class opening – Updated: May 28, 2020
Source: GMA News
Read more: DepEd News
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