37,000 teachers remain unvaccinated

Thirty-seven thousand teachers remain unvaccinated ahead of the opening of classes on 22 August, according to the Department of Education.

They, however, won’t be prevented from holding in-person classes provided that they strictly follow minimum health protocols, said DepEd Undersecretary for Field Operations Revsee Escovedo.

The figure represents about 5 percent of the total number of teachers in the country — around 800,000.

“So, all teachers will report to their classrooms,” Escovedo told reporters Monday on the sidelines of this year’s reopening of the Oplan Balik Eskwela command center at the agency’s Bulwagan ng Karunungan in Pasig City.

Escovedo, however, added that of the 37,000 teachers, 20,000 of them have already registered for the vaccination rollout.

He advised teachers and other school personnel who exhibit flu-like symptoms to stay home and have themselves tested for the disease.

“If they (teachers) are at home, they are considered on leave or excused with pay,” the DepEd official explained.

Meanwhile, DepEd Undersecretary EpimacoDensing III said the agency will conduct vaccination counseling to encourage parents to vaccinate their children.

“We have already coordinated with the Department of Health. We will have a joint memorandum circular in our schools that we will continue to have counseling with the parents so that we can convince them to have their children vaccinated against Covid-19, and they too as parents, if they have not been inoculated yet,” he added.

Densing said the agency is still in the process of gathering data on how many learners are still not vaccinated.

“We will set up vaccination sites if we already gotten a good number of students, parents, or even teaching or non-teaching personnel who wanted to be vaccinated,” the DepEd official added.

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