MANILA - The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) said on Tuesday there should still be class suspensions in times of typhoons and other calamities even though learning has shifted away from schools to the homes of students.
DILG Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya said the decision on class suspensions was up to local government units and must be based on the situation in the locality.
"In case of online classes or tinatawag na blended learning, 'pag may bagyo, posibleng kailangan ihanda ng mga pamilya ang kanilang bahay... apektado sila by blackouts or by intermittent signal ng mga internet service provider," Malaya said.
(In case of online classes or what we call blended learning, whenever there's a typhoon, it's possible that families need to prepare their homes... they are affected by blackouts or the intermittent signal of internet service providers.)
Malaya said mayors can also consult internet service providers on class suspensions, considering some students attend online classes.
"Kailangan sigurong ma-consult ang mga internet service provider kung maapektuhan ba ang signal during typhoon or any natural calamity," he said.
Earlier, Education Undersecretary Diosdado San Antonio said class suspensions may still be implemented in areas affected by bad weather but noted that such declarations are made by local officials.
For Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte, there is no need to suspend classes in times of bad weather, arguing that blended learning — which comprises online and offline methods — already "implies flexibility and resiliency in education."
"If parents are on Viber group with the teacher and there is a typhoon which interrupts connectivity, the teacher simply needs to message [the] parents to have their kids pre-install readings on their tablets or work on their printed modules," Belmonte said in a text message.
"If families need to be evacuated... evacuations due to typhoons, at least in Quezon City, do not last more than a few hours," the local chief executive added.
-- With a report from Jasmin Romero, ABS-CBN News