Instead of the previously announced date of August 24, the school opening for academic year 2020-2021 has been deferred to October 2020.
Education Secretary Leonor Briones announced Friday, August 14 that the opening of classes will now now be on October 5.
Briones received a Memorandum from Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdia about the new schedule of the class opening.
“Please be informed that pursuant to the instructions of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte, and as recommended by the DepEd, the opening of classes is deferred to 05 October 2020. In this regard, the DepEd is hereby instructed to ensure that all preparations have been made for the smooth and successful virtual opening of classes for Academic Year 2020-2021,” the Memo reads.
“As per the memorandum, the President has given approval to the recommendation of DepEd. Thus, we will implement such a decision to defer school opening to October 5 pursuant to Republic Act No. 11480. We shall use the deferment to provide relief to the logistical limitations faced by the areas placed under MECQ and to fill in the remaining gaps of the school opening that we are currently addressing,” Briones said in a statement.
“Areas outside MECQ are directed to continue their orientations, dry runs, and delivery of learning resources so that we will be ready for the opening of classes on October 5,” she added.
On Thursday, Senator Bong Go suggested to move further the school opening to give students, teachers, learning institutions and education authorities more time to prepare given the challenges the country is still facing due to COVID-19 pandemic.
“Our children’s safety and well-being are of utmost importance and it is our responsibility to ensure these,” said Go, chairman of the Senate Committee on Health and Demography.
Last Wednesday, Senator Francis Tolentino also made the same call to Deped to postpone the scheduled opening of classes this August to October or even later. He cited the new law, Rep. Act No. 11480, which enables the agency to do so.
“Forcing schools to open this August will only defeat the purpose of education. Let us accept the fact that we are not fully ready, and it will not be wise, to simultaneously open School Year 2020-2021,” Tolentino said.