School Year 2021-2022: Everything You Need to Know
As the threat of the Delta variant continues to ravage the country, the chances of our students going back to face-to-face classes is nowhere near in sight. Online distance learning will continue to be the practice for all schools in the Philippines. And as schools, students, and guardians gear for the opening of classes, here is a quick rundown of everything you need to know for the incoming (SY) 2021-2022.
DepEd has advised public schools to open on September 13, 2021. Private schools and non-DepEd Schools, on the other hand, can start their classes earlier than the said date, so long as they have the required permit and official greenlight from DepEd 7. According to DepEd 7 Director Salustiano Jimenez, private schools are required to submit their Basic Education Learning Continuity Plan, the dates to which they intend the classes for the respective schools, and other relevant documents required by the school’s regional director.
DepEd has also stated that they will continue implementing “enhanced blended learning” for all schools across the country. Blended learning is a learning scheme through multiple learning delivery modalities such as modular, online, media-based instruction, or a combination of two or more learning delivery modalities.
In other updates, the Bureau of Internal Revenue’s (BIR) recent suspension of implementing higher tax for non-profit educational institutions has allowed private schools a collective breath of financial relief. They recently issued Revenue Regulation No. 14-2021, which suspended provisions of Revenue Regulation No. 5-2021 (RR 5-2021). This controversial regulation would have caused the income tax of private schools to be increased to 25% - a significant hike from the 10% rate that private schools subscribe to. This movement also negates the goal of the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises (CREATE) Act, which aims to reduce the financial burden to companies and enable them to sustain business continuity amidst the pandemic. The burden of this possible tax hike can cause a tidal wave of operational roadblocks, from students dropping out due to tuition fee increases to schools closing down due to a significant decrease in enrollment.
As mass gatherings are still strictly prohibited, schools are also exploring different mediums and tools that can streamline their academic operations - without requiring any physical presence from their faculty staff. For example, some schools turned to Learning Management System and School Management System software for a smooth-sailing, digital transition. In an academic environment where continuity is critical despite the proximal limitations, these technologies have allowed schools to run as planned and bridge communication between students, guardians, faculty, and the entire administrative body.
Much about the incoming school year is still unclear. And with another year of online learning and a lockdown in the pipeline, schools are heeding lessons from last year’s shortcomings and hoping that innovation and better planning will bring life to a more productive school year for everyone.
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