CEBU CITY, Philippines – Students in areas devastated by Typhoon Odette are calling for an academic freeze and deadline extension as they remain without electricity and access to basic necessities.
The University of the Philippines Office of the Student Regent sent a letter addressed to the UP Vice President for Academic Affairs requesting that students in UP Cebu, UP Visayas, UP Tacloban College, and UP Mindanao be allowed to submit the deadlines until the end of the semester.
In the letter sent on Saturday, December 18, student regent Rene Co reiterated that UP students in affected campuses are without electricity and access to communication. Co amplified students’ worries that their current situation makes compliance with the academic workload close to impossible.
“Given the overwhelming priority for their lives, a unanimous concern for students now are the difficulties, and even the inability, to comply with the set deadlines for their academic requirements. As such, University Student Councils sent letters to their respective unit administration for requests of suspension of classes, extension of deadline of submission for requirements, leniency, and others,” the letter read.
The student regent also called for the suspension of all synchronous and asynchronous classes until the effects of the typhoon subside.
The student council of UP Cebu, in a letter addressed to Clement Camposano, the officer-in-charge of the constituent university, called for an indefinite suspension of both synchronous and asynchronous classes “until basic social services have been restored.”
The student council also requested the UP Cebu administration to help out in the rehabilitation efforts undergone by students and the rest of the community.
“We would also like to request for the university to channel its efforts for the recovery of the university constituents and to help the Filipino community amid these perilous times,” the letter read.
The University of San Carlos Supreme Student Council (USC-SSC) also stood firm on its demand that tuition downpayments for the second semester of the academic year be waived.
They also called for an adjustment of final exams on January 17-21 and for makeup classes intended for students unable to recover by January 17.
“Even with this, the council asserts that there should be a clear, firm, and decisive directive from the university to lessen anxiety, stress, and problems for students and teachers alike,” a post from the USC-SSC read.
As of writing, Cebu City remains without electricity, apart from its hospitals, and without water supply. The same is true for the majority of the towns in Cebu Province. Most of the provinces’ southern towns remain inaccessible to motor vehicles because of fallen trees and debris obstructing major roads. – Rappler.com