President Rodrigo Duterte has signed into law a bill that grants the chief executive powers to reschedule the opening of classes during a state of emergency or calamity.
Duterte on July 17 signed Republic Act No. 11480 which amends Republic Act No. 7797 that limits the opening of classes between the first Monday of June to the last day of August. Malacañang released a copy of the new law on Monday.
The new law allows the President, upon the recommendation of the secretary of education, to set a different date for the start of the school year during a state of emergency or calamity in the Philippines or parts thereof.
It also grants the education secretary with powers to authorize the holding of Saturday classes for both public and private schools. The educaton chief can also determine the end of the school year with consideration of the Christmas and summer breaks, and the “peculiar circumstances” of each region.
The law will take effect immediately upon publication in the Official Gazette or in a newspaper of general circulation.
The Department of Education earlier moved the opening of classes for the upcoming school year to Aug. 24 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, mindful of the limitations under Republic Act No. 7797.