/ 17 November 2021

INSTALLING plastic barriers in classrooms where face-to-face classes are being held is not mandatory, the Department of Health said.

Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said that students are safe from Covid19 infection even without plastic barriers as long as other health protocols are observed, such as having adequate ventilation and limiting the number of persons inside a room.

“So, with or without the plastic barriers as long as we can comply with the physical distancing, adequate ventilation and symptomatic screening across the different school children and teaching and non-teaching personnel, ay maaari tayong makapagsiguro ng kaligtasan ng ating mga kabataan,” Vergerie said.

“We also understand that because of limited resources, not all schools can have this (plastic barriers),” she added.

On Monday, 100 public schools across the country resumed physical classes after almost 20 months of distance learning.

“We are thankful for everyone who supported this key phase in our safe return to school advocacy, from the planning stage since 2020 to this monumental day,” the Department of Education said.

The DepEd thanked the DOH, the Inter-Agency Task Force, child health experts, local government units, international and local partners, school personnel, parents, and other stakeholders for “reinforcing our shared responsibility framework in this critical undertaking.”