There will be no classes for all levels in school year 2020-2021, according to a memorandum supposedly signed by President Rodrigo Duterte, as stated in his State of the Nation Address (SONA) on Monday, July 27.
Facebook user Juvy Naquila Parilla-Lpt created a text post on Monday morning, saying, “No classes for ALL in 2020-2021. Memorandum already sign by President Duterte according to his SONA…”
Before it was deleted around Monday afternoon, it had been shared at least 38,000 times and had received more than 12,000 reactions.
A reader emailed this post to Rappler and posted it on the Fact-checking in the Philippines Facebook group for verification. The reader also sent screenshots of other Facebook posts that contained the same claim.
The claim is unsupported and was posted before Duterte’s SONA even took place. It was posted on Facebook at around 7 am on Monday, but President Duterte’s SONA was scheduled around 4 pm.
Prior to the SONA, there were no news reports or official announcements that supported this claim. No copy of the supposed memorandum with this claim was also posted or made available to the public.
This claim was not mentioned at all during Duterte’s SONA 2020 speech itself.
Education Secretary Leonor Briones has emphasized that the planned opening of classes on August 24 to begin the 2020-2021 school year will continue, “whatever form it is.”
Duterte even recently signed Republic Act 11480 that gave him the power to reopen schools later than August during a state of emergency.
At least 21 million students have already enrolled in the basic education program in public and private schools by the end of the enrollment period on July 15, according to the Department of Education (DepEd).
DepEd earlier postponed face-to-face classes until a coronavirus vaccine becomes available. On July 21, the government announced that Duterte allowed “limited” face-to-face classes in low-risk areas or those under the modified general community quarantine or MGCQ.
Briones clarified that only areas that meet requirements and pass inspections can resume face-to-face classes.
During his SONA, Duterte reiterated his agreement with DepEd’s suggestion of resuming face-to-face classes in January 2021. – Rappler.com
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