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In-school classes start 15 November

Initially, 59 public schools were selected for the dry-run after they passed the granular risk assessment of the Department of Health

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It’s a “go” starting on 15 November for at least 30 schools that were handpicked by the Department of Education (DepEd) to hold a dry-run of limited in-person classes.

Of the number, three schools in Region 5 will hold face-to-face classes, three in Region 6, eight in Region 7, eight in Region 9, six in Region 10 and two in Region 12.

Initially, 59 public schools were selected for the dry-run after they passed the granular risk assessment of the Department of Health (DoH).

But DepEd Assistant Secretary Malcolm Garma told reporters in a virtual press briefing that the 59 was pared down to 30 for various reasons, including the reluctance by parents to send their children to school.

Some local government units have also expressed reservations on holding in-school classes in their respective jurisdictions, Garma added.

Still, the DepEd official said the final number of participating schools may be expected to increase as he cited an “unofficial tally” that participants may even balloon to 70.

When the DepEd first floated the idea of holding face-to-face classes, it said 100 public and 20 private schools may be chosen in the implementation of the pilot testing.

“Now, we don’t have to complete the 100. As to how many really passed based on the listing of DoH, they’re the only ones that will continue (with in-face classes),” Garma said in a mix of Filipino and English.

He said the DepEd cannot force in-school classes without the concurrence of the LGU.

The participating schools are as follows: Region 5, Gutusan Elementary School, Mary B. Perpetua National High School, and Sinalongan Elementary School; and Region 6, Mayabay Elementary School, Igsoro Elementary School, and Laserna Integrated School.

In Region 7, participating are the Basak Elementary School, Mahanlud Elementary School, Cabagdalan Elementary School, Luyongbaybay Elementary School, Cañang-Marcelo Luna National High School, Busay National High School, Pilar National High School, and Siocon Elementary School.

For Region 9, those opening their classrooms are the Siloh Elementary School, San Vicente Elementary School, Manga National High School, Manga Elementary School, Lala Elementary School, Sominot National High School, Tabina Elementary School, and Guipos National High School.

For Region 10, limited in-face classes will be held at the Dalama Central Elementary School, Babalaya Elementary School, Napo Elementary School, Masibay Integrated School, Tambacon Integrated School, and the Marcela T. Mabanta National High School.

In Region 12, the Paco National High School and Bato Elementary School are the participants in the dry-run.

Meanwhile, Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso expressed the readiness of the City of Manila for face-to-face classes as it demonstrated its readiness during an ocular inspection of the Aurora Quezon Elementary School in Malate, one of the chosen sites for in-school classes.

Domagoso said the city has put in place acrylic barriers to guard against the spread of Covid-19 once the city gets the go-signal from DepEd to hold face-to-face classes.

Domagoso announced that the city government has purchased 57,622 additional tablets for the use of students and teachers for online classes. These were on top of the 137,217 tablets previously bought and distributed by the city.

The free monthly data allocation of 10GB per recipient provided by the city has also been increased to 20GB, he said.

with Pat C. Santos

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