Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte can now adjust the date of school opening as he signed into law Republic Act 11480, an amendment to Republic Act 7797.
According to ABS-CBN News, which obtained a copy of the law today, July 20, 2020, it was signed by President Duterte on July 17.
RA 7797 extended the school calendar from 200 to 220 days. It stated that the school opening should be between the first Monday of June to the last day of August.
RA 11480 now amends that law. It allows the Philippine president, upon the recommendation of the Secretary of Education, to "set a different date for the start of the school year in the country or parts thereof" during a state of emergency or calamity.
If the president declares a new school opening date, it will apply to all basic education schools, including foreign or international schools. But it will be the Secretary of Education that will set the end of the regular school year, "taking into consideration the Christmas and summer vacations, and the peculiar circumstances of each region."
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Will this affect the upcoming August 24 school opening? While the country is in a state of a public health emergency, the president has not made any announcement. The Department of Education is not allowing face-to-face classes for the August 24 opening, but it will use a blended learning approach.
The law will take into effect upon its publication in the Official Gazette or in a newspaper.