January 12, 2022 – The Department of Education (DepEd) has reported some of the participating schools’ emerging good practices in conducting the pilot limited face-to-face classes after a month of its implementation.

During a Senate public hearing held last December 17, 2021, Assistant Secretary for the National Academy of Sports and Field Operations Malcolm Garma reported initiatives of participating schools in learning delivery as well as health and safety measures in traditional and modern approaches.

“I think this is the opportunity insofar as education is concerned – to really showcase the shared responsibility and coordination between the schools, the community, the parents, and the LGUs. Talagang nakita po namin yung effort ng lahat ng stakeholders, especially the local government units,” Asec. Garma noted.

“Importante po yung orientation. In fact, the reason why parents have already discouraged their children pagka sinisipon, di na nila pinapapasok, because involved po ang parents sa orientation. So alam po nila basically kung ano ang gagawin,” he added.

Some of the remarkable practices of schools to ensure the safety of learners are conducting daily orientation on health protocols, contactless facilities such as faucets that are controlled by infrared sensors and thermal imaging cameras, installed sanitation boxes with UV light for the output of learners, and use of QR codes for contact tracing, among others.

“If those set of [equipment] will provide [a] certain level of comfort among the parents and among the teachers involved, tinitingnan po namin kung ano yung possible value added nito, putting up an additional layer of protection,” he said.

In addition, he also shared the sentiments of the teachers in the importance of conducting face-to-face classes as they are now able to determine the learners’ strengths and weaknesses through one-on-one instruction.

“Many teachers have manifested that they really find it difficult to assess their learners if it is remote learning, so with the introduction of face-to-face learning, mas madali po nilang naibibigay yung feedback to our learners,” Asec. Garma shared.

DepEd also reported that some teachers and school personnel are part of the COVID-19 safety marshals accredited by TESDA, IATF, and their respective LGUs that helped in constantly reminding all the involved stakeholders in complying with the health protocols stipulated in the joint memorandum of the Department and the DOH.

Asec. Garma also noted that the emerging good practices reported by the schools will be considered by the Department in planning for the expansion phase of the face-to-face classes next year.

Meanwhile, Secretary Leonor Magtolis Briones is set to visit schools in NCR to monitor the readiness of public schools in Metro Manila in the expansion of limited face-to-face classes.