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Face-to-Face Classes in the Philippines: When Will it Be Safe?

Face-to-Face Classes in the Philippines: When Will it Be Safe?

With the nearing rollout of some vaccines under the Emergency Use Authorization (EUA), some experts are thinking over the possibility of face-to-face classes in the Philippines. Here’s the latest development on this issue.

New Bid for Face-to-Face Classes, Rejected

With the emergence of more contagious COVID-19 variants, the president had suspended the planned pilot-testing of face-to-face classes in the country.

But on February 19, authorities hinted at yet another possibility: in-person classes with limited hours. This is after DepEd’s renewed call to open the classes, stating that many learners want to go back to school to learn with their friends.

Authorities explained1 that should face-to-face classes in low-risk areas push through, the hours might be limited. The students will still take advantage of blended learning with modules and online classes, but they might have to physically go to school 1 hour or 3 hours weekly.

face-to-face classes in the philippines

However, the new proposal was rejected.

A representative detailed in an interview2 that there will still be no face-to-face classes in the Philippines. According to the spokesperson, they don’t want to put the students’ and teachers’ lives in danger, seeing that vaccination has not started yet.

Distance Learning Tips for Parents

Many parents felt relieved after knowing that their kids can still study in their homes’ safety, but they also agree that distance learning is challenging. To help your child make the most out of their online education, consider the following tips:

  • Allow your child some creativity in their “study space.” Help them design and organize their belongings.
  • Help your child make and achieve daily or weekly goals. Careful planning based on the school’s provided curriculum will keep them on track and reduce the risk of burnout.
  • Allow them breaks in between tasks. Remember that kids have a shorter attention span.
  • Don’t forget to praise and reward them for a job well done in school (in both video classes and modules).
  • Make and follow a schedule, and distinguish between school days, weekends, and holidays.

And finally, remember that studying at home could significantly reduce their activity level, so it’s best to encourage them to stay physically active through play.

Expectations for the Face-to-Face Classes in the Philippines

Officials expressed hope that in-person classes will happen in low-risk areas by August of this year. Should physical schooling resume, parents can expect the following:

  • Temperature checks at the entrance of schools.
  • Elimination of lockers to reduce physical contact.
  • The school might use outdoor spaces for classes and recess.
  • Reduction in the number of students in school buses.
  • The wearing of masks and handwashing will still be a priority.

Knowing what to expect before the actual opening of in-person classes will help parents better prepare themselves and their kids.

For instance, the elimination of lockers might mean your child will need a bigger bag. Since the number of students on school buses is limited, you might want to consider the possibility of arranging private transport for your children.

As for the wearing of masks, experts suggest the following:

  • Give your child multiple cloth masks for the day.
  • Ensure that each face mask has a separate sealed container.
  • Label your child’s masks and container. Instruct them to never share or trade masks with others.
  • Remind your child never to take their mask off unless when they’ll eat during recess.
  • Teach them how to put on and remove face masks correctly.
  • Explain why some people are not wearing masks, such as those who are exercising and children under five.

Before the face-to-face classes in the Philippines resume, teach your child the proper way of handwashing. Don’t forget about disinfection; show them how to disinfect their belongings using disinfectant wipes or tissue with at least 60% alcohol.

And finally, instruct your children to tell you right away if they feel unwell or sick.

Learn more about Child Health here.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Sources

1 Face-to-face classes, if approved, might have limited hours: Palace
https://news.abs-cbn.com/news/02/19/21/face-to-face-classes-if-approved-might-have-limited-hours-palace
Accessed February 22, 2021

2 Duterte rejects fresh bid to resume face-to-face classes — Palace
Read more: https://newsinfo.inquirer.net/1398580/duterte-rejects-fresh-bid-to-resume-face-to-face-classes-palace#ixzz6nCD6R3s4
Accessed February 22, 2021

DepEd renews call for school opening
https://newsinfo.inquirer.net/1397535/deped-renews-call-for-school-opening#ixzz6nAgNBXNp
Accessed February 22, 2021

Online Learning Tips: Practical Tips for Parents
https://www.mcmillaneducation.com/news-and-insights/wise-insights/online-learning-tips-practical-tips-for-parents-3800
Accessed February 22, 2021

Safety tips for returning to school during COVID-19
Print
https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/coronavirus/in-depth/returning-safely-to-school-covid-19/art-20490441
Accessed February 22, 2021

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Written by Lorraine Bunag, R.N. Updated Jun 22
Medically reviewed by Elfred Landas, M.D.
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