/ 15 September 2021

EDUCATION Secretary Leonor Briones shared stories of hope and love as School Year 2021-2022 formally opened on Monday, September 13.

“Even in the time of cholera or Covid19, with all its horrors and terrors, there is love. Even in the time of evil, there is always hope. Even in the time of the Delta variant, there is love. And there is education,” Briones said before declaring School Year 2021-2022 open.

The DepEd chief shared that the agency strove to deliver its mandate of providing education for learners and ensuring the welfare of teachers amid the pandemic, citing the implementation of the Basic Education-Learning Continuity Plan and the increase of salaries and benefits of personnel.

“We did what was considered impossible in five months. We translated printed material into TV, radio, cell phone, tablet; and yes, utilized walkie-talkies for remote schools,” she noted.

Based on the September 13 Learner Information System report, 18,561,298 learners enrolled in public schools, while 1,443,849 students are registered in private schools. Alternative Learning System has 198,297 enrollees.

“The challenges we are facing now are even tougher than those we battled last year. Nonetheless, 24,604,822 million learners have returned to schools and we expect even more to enlist for late enrollment,” Briones said.

Undersecretary Nepomuceno Malaluan thanked teachers and school leaders for the encouraging enrollment turnout rate.

“The enrollment report is still on a steady upward trend. Taking into consideration the reporting lag and several regions already surpassing 100 percent of last year’s enrollment, there is indication not only of our learners from last year continuing this year, but also that some of our learners who opted to skip last school year are coming back,” Malaluan said.