Senator urges DepEd to end school year early due to COVID-19

By Dolly Yasa

BACOLOD City – Negrense Senator Juan Miguel Zubiri requested the Department of Education to end the school year 2019-2020 early due to concerns over the localized spread of the coronavirus disease or COVID-19.

In a statement, Zubiri said the government cannot afford to have a slow reactive response against the virus as he urged a more proactive approach from local agencies and local governments.

By ending the school year early, children can stay safe at home and allow the schools to be disinfected.

“There are only a few days left till the summer break so we should ask the DepEd to just order the early break as what was done to hundreds of millions of school kids all over the world to avoid contamination and spread,” he said.

Zubiri also called for stricter measures and protocols in handling the virus.

“We don’t want to create panic amongst our people but that was the initial complacency on countries like Iran, South Korea, and Italy and now they have thousands of cases and hundreds of deaths,” he said.

The senator also urged the Department of Health (DOH) to make testing kits available in all hospitals, so anyone with the symptoms can immediately be tested.

“I don’t think this is excessive. Let’s not be complacent. We have seen how the virus has completely terrorized other countries. Let us not wait for the same thing to happen to us before we spring to action,” he added.

Earlier over the weekend, the DOH confirmed the 6th COVID-19 case in the country.

DOH Secretary Dr. Francisco Duque recommended a declaration of “state of public health emergency” to President Rodrigo Duterte.