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MANILA, Philippines – The limited face-to-face classes in the country’s capital have been suspended amid rising COVID-19 cases, the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) said on Sunday, January 2.
In a series of tweets, the MMDA said the holding of such limited classes would be suspended starting January 3. The agency noted the suspension of limited face-to-face classes was in line with the implementation of Alert Level 3 in the National Capital Region (NCR). (READ: What we know so far: Pilot run of limited face-to-face classes in PH)
“According to MMDA Chairman Benhur Abalos, the suspension of face to face classes is automatic as Metro Manila goes under stricter alert level 3 status starting Monday until January 15 due to increase in COVID-19 cases and recorded cases of Omicron variant,” the MMDA said.
As of January 2, the Philippines recorded an additional 4,600 COVID-19 cases. At present, the country has 21,418 active cases.
Under the country’s COVID-19 task force’s guidelines for the implementation of alert level system, the holding of limited face-to-face classes was prohibited in areas under Alert Level 3. The activity, among others, was characterized as high-risk for transmission.
In a statement, the Department of Education (DepEd) confirmed the cancellation of limited physical classes.
“Consistent with the recent memorandum of the IATF for the Alert Level 3 protocols and considering the notable increase of COVID cases in NCR, DepEd, in consultation with DOH, confirms that face-to-face classes for pilot schools in NCR are suspended until the alert level reverts to Level 2,” the education department said.
“Face-to-face classes in pilot schools in areas under Alert Levels 1 and 2 shall continue in the meantime that DepEd finalizes its report on the pilot face-to-face classes,” the DepEd added.
In December last year, at least 28 public schools participated in the pilot run of limited face-to-face classes in Metro Manila. In November 2021, the government had finally approved the limited face-to-face classes in over a hundred schools in the country.