DepEd: 6,148 classrooms used as COVID-19 isolation facilities

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Apr 13 2021 06:10 PM | Updated as of Apr 13 2021 06:54 PM

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(UPDATE) The Department of Education said on Tuesday it turned over to authorities 6,148 classrooms for use as facilities for the isolation of people with COVID-19. 

These classrooms are located in 1,212 schools, majority or 422 of said schools are in Eastern Visayas, while 216 are in Bicol region, said DepEd Undersecretary Alain Pascua. 

Only 4 of these schools are in Metro Manila, he said in a public briefing. 

A total of 2,147 classrooms and 4 non-classroom facilities are also being used as quarantine facilities in Eastern Visayas.

Schools should be used for health programs as a "last resort," said Education Secretary Leonor Briones. 

In a press briefing Tuesday, the education chief said she has agreed to the request of the Department of Health and the MMDA to use schools as quarantine facilities under four conditions. 

Briones reiterated that schools should be the “last resort" during a calamity or tragedy as these are the second home of students. 

Classrooms that will be used should also be appropriate as isolation centers, subject to the evaluation of the DOH. 

Briones also requested LGUs to spearhead the management of schools being used as quarantine facilities. 

She added that simultaneous activities in schools should be avoided. 

"Halimbawa kung gawing vaccination center ang isang eskwelahan, hindi pwedeng gawing isolation center din iyang eskwelahan na iyan. Kung mayroong activities ang eskwelahan, halimbawa sa paghahanda sakali mang magbubukas na ang ating schools, dapat hindi iyan ihalo. Ibig lang namin sabihin, kung isolation, isolation lang. Kung vaccination, vaccination lang. Huwag ihalo-halo, lalo na sa academic activities kung mayroon man," Briones explained. 

- with a report from Arra Perez, ABS-CBN News