Kabataan Partylist expresses great concern over the Duterte administration’s insistence on the resumption of classes amid the lack of necessary health measures, such as mass testing and facilities’ readiness. Expanded testing has just started three months into the lockdown.
“We call on the Department of Education (DepEd) and the Commission of Higher Education (CHED) to heed the students’ and teachers’ demands amid the pandemic, to be humane, and to provide practical and scientific approaches to the education system apt in the times of public health emergency,” Rep. Sarah Elago said.
This is in response to DepEd Secretary Leonor Briones’ push for blended or distance learning despite the department’s data already showing more than half of students not enrolling for this year. DepEd and CHED both plan to push for the opening of classes around late August and September.
“The administration’s insistence to push through with classes amid the lack of mass testing and cases of student’s deaths amid the lockdown–amid the whole situation not getting better–is not only heartless but also showing of misplaced priorities and inability to handle the health crisis,” Elago added.
“No mass testing, no school opening. Physical classes imperil both educators and students alike, and insistence of a ‘new normal’ in education would only further marginalize the poor and those living in areas ill-equipped to accommodate even the proposed alternative means of learning. We call on the Duterte administration to aggressively push for mass testing and the vital prerequisites to make classes safe and accessible to everyone,” Elago ended.