The Department of Education has suspended classes at all levels in Negros Oriental from Jan. 24-31 due to the rising number of coronavirus disease 2019 cases, and to allow Typhoon Odette-stricken areas to recover.
Dr. Salustiano Jimenez, DepEd regional director for Central Visayas, told the media in an interview on Friday that aside from Negros Oriental, the provinces of Bohol and Cebu are also covered by his memorandum on the cancellation of classes.
“I issued that memorandum on Thursday to cover all Provinces that are under Alert Level 3, with the exception of Siquijor, because CoViD-19 cases are increasing, and with the threat of the Omicron variant, the numbers are expected to go up,” he said.
Only the province of Siquijor in Region 7 is under Alert Level 2, he noted.
The week-long suspension of classes will also give the teachers, non-teaching staff, parents, and learners who were affected by Typhoon Odette to recover from the devastation, Jimenez said, even as he relayed that the typhoon destroyed computer equipment, modules, and other learning materials, aside from the classrooms.
Some 300,000 learners in all levels up to Grade 12 are covered by the suspension of classes.
For private schools, the DepEd Regional Director said “they may exercise their own discretion” and may consult with their respective parents’ associations.
Meanwhile, Jimenez said repairs continue for classrooms that have been destroyed by the typhoon, which lashed out at Visayas provinces on Dec. 16 last year.
Local government units and NGOs have been helping in repair works, while the DepEd has started allocating funds for the rebuilding of totally-damaged infrastructure, he added. (Judy F. Partlow/PNA)