CHEd: Follow existing class suspension rules

The Commission on Higher Education recently ordered all higher education institutions to observe their existing guidelines on the suspension of classes during calamities following the alleged “confusion” between the CHEd’s directive and the Department of Education’s revised guidelines.

CHEd chairperson Prospero de Vera III stressed that DepEd’s Order 037, s. of 2022 has generated a “mix-up” for the automatic cancellation of classes from kindergarten to Grade 12, and work in public schools in areas under any public storm signals raised by PAGASA.

DepEd’s order said that “private schools, as well as state universities and colleges and local universities and colleges have the option to abide by the provisions of the order as to cancellation or suspension of classes and work in schools in the event of natural disasters, power outages/power interruption, and other calamities.”

De Vera stressed that HEIs have long been guided by Executive Order 66, Series of 2012 on the suspension of classes due to typhoons, flooding, and other weather disturbances and calamities.

He added that under the CHEd Memorandum Order 15, Series of 2012, classes at the collegiate level, including graduate school, in the affected area, are automatically cancelled or suspended when Signal No. 3 is raised by PAGASA and announced through various media outlets.

It also states that classes at the collegiate level, including graduate school, may be canceled or suspended at the discretion of the local chief executives of local government units and/or heads of HEIs if special circumstances in their area such as flooding, road damage, etc. warrant it.

HEIs are also advised to monitor National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council announcements where disasters and calamities are present.

“However, in case the local chief executives order the suspension of classes pursuant to this section, HEIs within the area should observe the same,” De Vera said.

“Until the amendment or revocation of the said Executive Order and CMO No. 15, Series of 2012, CHEd instructs all HEIs to observe these guidelines in their respective campuses,” he added.

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