DAVAO CITY (MindaNews / 5 May) – Two big medical schools in Davao City have applied for limited face-to-face classes with the Commission on Higher Education (CHED)-Davao Region more than a year after suspension of in-campus classes due to the threat of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
Dr. Ashley Lopez, City Health Office (CHO) acting head, said in a text message on Wednesday that the Davao Medical School Foundation and Brokenshire College, Inc. manifested their intention to pursue limited face-to-face classes for their students enrolled in their medical programs.
He said the regular classes will still not be permitted to lower the risk of COVID-19 transmission.
Once approved, Lopez added that the face-to-face activities will be strictly limited to laboratory learnings and examinations of students.
“These are the activities that we will allow under limited face-to-face. If your school wants to apply, you [higher education institutions] have to approach CHED, and for elementary and high school, the [Department of Education],” he said.
But Lopez said that it remains uncertain whether the primary and secondary academic institutions will be permitted to hold limited face-to-face classes due to the current COVID-19 situation in the city.
He said the higher education institutions will be subjected to rigorous “physical assessment” if the basic health protocols and other requirements can be complied with by the schools.
“You will undergo assessment not only documentary but also ‘physical’ assessment of the schools because you have to follow the basic health protocols. If you will be able to comply with the requirements, then you might be given a license or permit for limited face-to-face classes,” he said.
Section 19 of Executive Order 12 issued by Mayor Sara Duterte on March 12, 2021 provides that face-to-face or in-person classes shall be prohibited from kindergarten to post-graduate level until a new order shall be issued to lift the ban.
It added that limited face-to-face or in-person attendance for higher education institutions and post-graduate courses is allowed for the purposes of examinations and laboratory learning provided that the distancing of not less than one-meter between individuals is strictly observed.
It said gathering for eating, meeting or group practice is strictly prohibited. (Antonio L. Colina IV / MindaNews)