In an online press conference on Facebook, DepEd Secretary Leonor Briones remarked, “At saka 233,169 na learners from the private schools ang nag-migrate. Dati nag-warning ako na ang mga nasa private school, nagma-migrate na sa public schools.”
Many parents have lost their jobs during the COVID-19 pandemic, and Sec. Briones said this was one of the reasons parents are transferring their kids to public school. According to the labor force survey of the Philippine Statistics Authority in April 2020, around 7.3 million Filipinos are currently jobless.
DepEd Undersecretary Jess Mateo reported that about 9 million students have yet to enroll out of the expected 27.7 million expected students for the coming school year (18,871,245 have registered).
As of July 7, only 866,935 students have enrolled in private schools, not even half the number of students in private schools last year, or 4,304,676. DepEd noted, however, that private schools are still conducting enrollment, and school openings vary.
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DepEd has extended the enrollment for public schools to July 15.
The DepEd has prepared for a blended learning education, a “learning delivery that combines face-to-face with any other modalites. Primarily, public school students will use self-learning modules.” These can be used along with printed or digital modules, online learning resources such as the DepEd Commons, and television- or radio-based instructional materials.
According to DepEd, parents may opt not to buy technological gadgets, and their kids can still continue their education. The DepEd has released minimum specifications for parents or donors who would like to buy or donate laptops or desktop computers, tablets, or smartphones for the kids’ use.