/ 26 October 2021

SENATOR Sherwin Gatchalian on Monday urged the government to include private schools in its planned pilot test of limited face-to-face classes.

The chairman of the Senate Committee on Basic Education, Arts and Culture said that private schools have the capacity and resources to invest in health safety measures.

“I’ve talked to a lot of private schools and they are ready to invest and ready to open. Let’s allow private schools because they have the luxury of space and they’re willing to put in the investment to make their schools safe,” Gatchalian said.

The senator also expressed disappointment that only a few schools applied for permits to resume in-person classes.

“I think there’s still a lot of fear because the criteria [are] very strict. You need the local government units and the community, stakeholders to agree,” he pointed out.

“There’s still a lot of fear among LGUs and community members of the school,” the senator lamented.

Gatchalian believes that the vaccination program for minors would help boost the confidence of parents.

“Definitely, this will be a gamechanger. A lot of our parents are already ready to inoculate their teenagers,” he said.

“With this vaccination of teenagers, confidence will go up. This will improve the confidence of our parents to bring their kids back to school,” he added.