No class suspension yet in Cebu City — Labella

By: Rosalie Abatayo March 12,2020 - 11:22 PM
Mayor Edgardo Labella together with representatives and heads of private schools discusses the coronavirus threat. He, however, says that there will be no suspension of classes yet.| Gerard Francisco

Cebu City Mayor Edgardo Labella and heads of private schools in the city meet on Thursday evening, March 12, 2020, to discuss the concerns of holding graduation and class suspension amid the Coronavirus disease threat.| Gerard Francisco

CEBU CITY, Philippines — School children may be better shielded against the coronavirus disease while attending classes in school rather than when their classes are cut short amid the health threat.

In a meeting with the heads of private schools in Cebu City on Thursday evening, March 12, 2020, Labella said he did not see it fit to suspend classes yet because of the coronavirus scare.

“I trust the teachers. I trust the schools. That’s my take. Because, you know, when children are at school, they are well taken care of, they are monitored. The teachers can provide them with disinfectant. The teachers can take care of our children,” Labella said.

Read more: Labella: No suspension of classes yet, markets ordered cleaned

The mayor said that he was concerned that if school days would be cut short, the youth might opt to stay in cinemas and other crowded places instead of being safe at home.

However, Labella said, if a local situation would arise in Cebu City in relation to COVID-19, he ensured that the local government unit would “act on it accordingly.”

‘Shortest and simplest graduation rights’

During the meeting of the mayor with the school heads held at a hotel in the uptown area, the latter said they would consider to indefinitely suspend their graduation rites in compliance with new circular from the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) in order to prevent the students and their parents from being exposed to crowded places.

Some of the school heads would also consider keeping their ceremonies short in order to minimize the length of time that the students and their parents might stay in the venue.

‘Completing’ the school year, ‘summer’

Dr. Josefino Ronquillo of the Commission on Higher Education in Central Visayas (CHED-7) said they would leave it upon the discretion of the schools whether or not they would still hold or cut short their school year due to the health hazard.

Ronquillo said they would give the tertiary institution the academic freedom to decide on the matter.

He added that teachers might also opt to ask their students to submit outputs online as an alternative mode of delivery.

“Yes, [it will be up to them]. They will just have to inform CHED that they will have this kind of arrangement in their operations,” Ronquillo said in an interview after school heads’ meeting./dbs

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TAGS: Cebu City, class suspension, coronavirus, COVID-19, Labella, private schools

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