/ 4 November 2022

THE PHILIPPINE Business for Education backed the resumption of full face-to-face classes to quell the impact of the learning crisis in the country.

“The pandemic has taken its toll on the education sector and the full reopening of classes will give it the much-needed boost after two years of lockdowns,” PBEd’s Executive Director Justine Raagas said.

“The return of in-person classes must be coupled with appropriate programs that will enable students to catch up on basic reading and math skills. Both private and public sectors must work together to bridge the gaps and act quickly to recover the learning losses aggravated by the pandemic,” Raagas added.

Filipino students are lagging behind in global learning assessments. According to a report by the World Bank, the Philippines has the highest level of learning poverty in East Asia and the Pacific, which jumped from 70 percent in 2019 to 91 percent this year—meaning that nine out of 10 Filipino children aged 10 are still struggling to read simple texts.

Vice President and Education Secretary Sara Duterte-Carpio recently stated that the Department of Education is aware of the schools’ poor performance in the international assessments and stressed the importance of pushing for in-person classes to address learning gaps among learners.

PBEd, however, emphasized that the government must ensure proper safety measures are in place with the implementation of the full face-to-face classes.

“While we need to bring back the students in school, we must also keep the learners safe. The government must ramp up their efforts to ensure that health protocols are set and complied with,” Raagas said.

The Department of Education reported on Wednesday, November 2, that 94 percent of the public schools in the National Capital Region have resumed in-person classes.