The Philippines will incur P11 trillion in productivity losses over the next 40 years due to the coronavirus pandemic hindering the resumption of face-to-face classes, according to Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Karl Chua.
Chua on Thursday, September 9, told senators that the alarming figure is just the result of one year of holding classes virtually.
“The lack of face-to-face classes will limit the learning ability of students and has a permanent effect over the life span of the student while he is in the labor force,” Chua said during the 2022 budget deliberations.
The figure, he said, was from various studies conducted by other countries, as well as the Asian Development Bank.
The Department of Health and the Department of Education are still finalizing the joint issuance for the conduct of limited face-to-face classes.
The joint circular contains the requirements and parameters for the safe reopening of schools, such as the transmission rate, availability of facilities, and ample space to hold classes while allowing physical distancing.
It remains unclear whether the pilot run will start this September.
Duterte has repeatedly rejected proposals for face-to-face classes due to the Delta variant of the coronavirus.
Aside from the Philippines, Venezuela is the only other country that has yet to decide when to reopen schools. – Rappler.com