Blended learning will continue when classes open on Sept. 13, Education Secretary Leonor Briones said yesterday.
“President Duterte is looking at many aspects of our health situation [vis-a-vis allowing face-to-face classes],” Brioner said.
“So I’d like to clarify that when classes resume on Sept. 13, it will still be blended learning,” she added.
The Philippines is the only country in the Southeast Asian region that has yet to resume face-to-face classes for basic education, the DepEd chief earlier said.
Blended learning mixes online classes with printed modules and television and radio broadcasts.
Last month, Duterte rejected a proposal from the Education department to allow limited face-to-face classes in 300 public schools nationwide.
“As for face-to-face classes, I am not inclined to agree with you. We might differ in our opinions on the matter,” Duterte told Briones during a public address.
“It is difficult. I cannot gamble on the health of the children. I hope you will understand,” he added.
Briones earlier said there were originally 1,900 schools approved by DepEd regional directors for the pilot testing of limited face-to-face classes.
The number was reduced further to 300 upon the advice of lawmakers who said it was “too many.”
Schools across the country have remained closed since March last year when the pandemic broke out, with learners at the basic education level remaining at their homes.
DepEd first proposed the pilot testing in low- or no-risk areas in December last year. Duterte initially approved it but in April withdrew his go-signal amid the surge in cases and the detection of more transmissible variants in the country.
The government has yet to include individuals aged 17 years and below in its vaccination rollout program.