November 24, 2020 — The clarification we made that there was no partnership with the Office of the Vice President (OVP) for face-to-face classes is with reference to the Inquirer story titled “OVP partners with DepEd, others for limited in-person classes”. It is of public knowledge that the present policy is for distance learning modality only, and that reintroduction of face-to-face classes involving the congregation of learners will require approval by the President given the public health considerations.

We are not privy to how the OVP has represented their initiative to media, and are responding only to the news item. Last August, we forwarded OVP’s letters and our reply to the President and to the Executive Secretary.

While we stated in our letter-reply that we welcomed the initiative of the OVP, this was in a general sense as we welcome all support for learning continuity, but we sought details precisely to allow us to evaluate the initiative. It was clearly not an agreement to a partnership, much less a reversal of a standing policy of no face-to-face classes at this time, even on a limited scale. We just had a meeting with the Educ Forum this morning, where we shared the considerations for face-to-face classes, and that we are still about to finish our updated recommendation to the President for his consideration.