In its 1st Quarter 2021 Full Council Meeting, the SDC XI passed a resolution enjoining the support of Davao Region Local Government Units (LGUs) in the pilot implementation of DepEd’s limited face-to-face classes.

The adoption of the limited face-to-face classes comes as a response to the monitoring and assessment of DepEd on the Distance Learning Delivery Modalities (DLDMs) during the heights of the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as the success of the current mitigating measures and the anticipated roll out of the Philippine National Deployment and Vaccination Plan for COVID-19 Vaccines. The proposed limited face-to-face classes will serve as a mechanism to assess the viability of the safe reopening of schools in low-risk areas, identify strategies or resource requirements for the effective and efficient transition of learners from distance learning to expanded face-to-face classes.

Pilot implementation of limited face-to-face classes shall be allowed, with the concurrence of the host LGU through an Executive Order or Sangguniang Panglalawigan Resolution, for participating schools or learning centers that are identified by their respective Provincial Inter-agency Task Force (PIATF) as zero COVID-infected areas. DepEd XI reported that the number of classes per Grade level will depend on the size classification of the school – one class per level for small schools and a maximum of 3 classes per level for large schools.

DepEd XI informed that 39 schools are eyed to implement limited face-to-face classes – seven (7) schools from Davao de Oro, five (5) from Davao del Sur, twenty (20) from Davao Occidental, and seven (7) from the City of Tagum. DepEd XI is finalizing its processes for the operationalization of its Face-to-Face Operational Framework, and are in close coordination with LGUs on the eligibility requirements and other preparatory activities. With the resumption of face-to-face classes, DepEd XI reported that the schools can help in the enforcement of health standards and increase awareness regarding the pandemic. DepEd XI committed to address the teaching and learning gaps encountered during the conduct of DLDMs while also delivering quality basic education in a safe learning environment to learners in low-risk areas.

Other important matters discussed during the Committee’s meeting were the updates on COVID-19 situation and the status of implementation in Davao Region of the Philippine National Deployment and Vaccination Plan for COVID-19 Vaccines, the endorsement of the “Supporting Innovation Philippine TVET System” Project (SIPTVETS) of TESDA, and a report on the highlights of the National and Regional Social Development Consultative Meetings.