Duterte rejects resumption of face-to-face classes anew


Posted at Feb 28 2021 08:03 PM

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MANILA – President Rodrigo Duterte said Sunday he would still not allow the resumption of in-person classes in the country, even as vaccines against COVID-19 have begun to arrive.

“Huwag muna ngayon. Not now. I cannot make that decision,” Duterte said in press briefing at Villamor Air Base in Pasay during the arrival of 600,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccines from Chinese drugmaker Sinovac.

He was responding to a question if he would allow the return of in-person classes now that vaccines have arrived in the country.

Duterte said face-to-face classes would “place the children in jeopardy” at this time.

“I am not ready to lose the lives of our young people,” he added.

Duterte previously said he would not allow in-person classes unless a vaccine against COVID-19 would be made available in the country.

Last week, the chief executive rejected the Department of Education’s proposal to hold a dry run of face-to-face classes in the country since the country had yet to roll out its vaccination program.

But in a hearing last Wednesday, several senators expressed support for the proposed dry run, with Sen. Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan saying a pilot implementation was needed so the DepEd would be prepared for the actual resumption of in-person classes.

Aside from lawmakers, various groups have also called on government to safely reopen schools, citing challenges that teachers, students and parents have been facing with distance learning.