HomeNewsAteneo de Manila postpones return to in-person classes due to COVID-19 surge

Ateneo de Manila postpones return to in-person classes due to COVID-19 surge

The Education department also announced that local officials can now suspend classes and other teaching-related activities

The Jesuit-run Ateneo de Manila University announced that it is postponing “indefinitely” plans to conduct limited in-person classes due to the surge in COVID-19 cases in the country.

“This [postponement] covers the planned limited in-person classes for the higher education units (Loyola Schools and Professional Schools), as well as the return to on-site work,” said Father Roberto Yap, SJ, university president.

“Until further notice, classes will continue to be fully online and staff will be on remote work mode, except for those who regularly report onsite,” the priest said in a memorandum released this week.

Father Yap said the start of the second semester for Academic Year 2021-2022 in the Loyola Schools has been moved to January 31.

Limited in-person classes in the Ateneo School of Medicine and Public Health and the administration of the Bar Exams at the Ateneo Law School Rockwell Campus “will proceed, with strict adherence to health and safety protocols.”

“The Professional Schools and the Loyola Schools will issue more details on these developments,” read the memorandum.

Meanwhile, the Department of Education on Thursday, January 13, announced that local officials can suspend classes and other teaching-related activities due to the rising COVID-19 cases.

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In a memorandum issued Wednesday, the agency authorized its regional offices and school division offices to suspend classes based on reliable assessment of health status of their teachers and learners.

“The ROs/SDOs shall decide on the specific dates and number of days for the suspension of classes as long as the period of class suspension does not exceed two weeks in order to avoid a prolonged disruption in the current school calendar,” read the memorandum.

The department said all synchronous and asynchronous classes will be put on hold, while submission of academic requirements and conduct of other teaching-related activities must be moved to a later date during the suspension of classes.

For private schools, the department said they may exercise their own discretion to suspend classes “when COVID-19 risks in their respective areas are high.”

The Alliance of Concerned Teachers and Teachers’ Dignity Coalition earlier called for “health breaks” in public schools, saying many educators and students have gotten sick.

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