DepEd assures enough classrooms

A top official of the Department of Education on Monday assured there are enough classrooms for this school year.

DepEd Undersecretary Epimaco Densing III said they will implement class shifting and blending learning to avoid overcrowding of students.

“This (shifting of classes) is not new as we already doing this in past years,” Densing told reporters in a press conference at the DepEd central office in Pasig City.

Previously, the student-classroom in highly urbanized areas is 1:68 but this has been reduced to 45 students per classroom with the construction of additional classrooms, according to Densing.

“The shifting of classes only happens in Metro Manila and other highly urbanized cities because, in general, the standard ratio of 1:45 (students per classroom ratio) has been met already by DepEd. Right now, we are averaging one classroom to 29 students,” Densing said.

“We are just watching those crowded places to reduce the number of students in every shift,” the DepEd official added.

Around 28.6 million learners are expected to attend classes during the opening of school year on 22 August, the Education department said earlier.

“We will proceed with the 22 August school opening, including in the earthquake affected areas,” DepEd spokesperson Michael Poa said.

“We are already doing interventions in the earthquake-stricken areas. We also are planning [to implement] the alternative delivery mode in those areas,” Poa added.

As of 15 August, a total of 20,628,68 students have enrolled for this school year so far.

Of this number, 18,147,254 enrollees were from public schools, 2,411,042 were from private schools, while 70,386 from state universities and colleges and local universities and colleges.

The highest number of enrollees was recorded in Region 4-A with 2,980,213, followed by the National Capital Region with 2,260,488, and Region 3 with 2,312,455.

Balik-Eskwela

The DepEd on Monday reactivated its Oplan Balik Eskwela to ensure a smooth and safe reopening of classes for this school year.

The programs aims to engage partner government agencies and stakeholders in preparation for the resumption of classes on 22 August.

DepEd spokesperson Michael Poa said 17 partner agencies have expressed support and laid out their plans for this year’s opening of classes.

“We thank our partner agencies wherein they presented their commitment and what they will do to help us ensure a safe return of schools of our learners,” Poa said in a press conference.

“We will also launch today our Oplan Balik Eskwela command center. This will help us address issues and concerns on the ground,” he added.

Poa also asked for help and cooperation from the parents to ensure a safe reopening of classes of the learners.

Meanwhile, Vice President and Education Secretary Sara Z. Duterte thanked the Ayala Foundation for supporting DepEd’s programs.

Duterte said she had a meeting with Ayala Foundation chairperson Jaime Zobel de Ayala, Ayala Foundation president Ruel Maranan, iPeople President Alfredo Ayala, and Ayala Coordinator Cel Rosales-Amores at the DepEd central office on Monday morning.

“They expressed their willingness to support all the programs of DepEd for the development of the quality of education in our country,” she said.

“I thank the Ayala Foundation for their dedication and for extending assistance to all Filipino learners,” the vice president added.

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