May 23, 2024

■  Ofelia C. Empian 

The province of Abra has implemented hybrid learning where no in-person classes were held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. due to the extreme heat.

Gov. Dominic Valera, in an executive order, has directed all schools to observe the modified school hours where all levels in the public and private educational institutions shall implement in-person classes only from 6 to 10 a.m. and/or from 3 to 6 p.m.

“The province of Abra is still experiencing high heat index levels, posing health risks to the residents, particularly the students, faculty, and staff of educational institutions,” Valera stated. 

The schools were told to only hold in-person classes during the non-critical hours and implement alternative modes of teaching such as online classes, modular learning, and other distance learning methods. 

The order was in effect from April 22 to May 3.

Further, all educational institutions were told to designate standby first aid responders during in-person classes to ensure the safety and well-being of students, teachers, and staff.

Parents, guardians, and barangay officials were also urged to assist in the enforcement of the EO.

DepEd-Cordillera Director Estela Cariño said in the region, Abra and Apayao were monitored to have high heat index.

Earlier, the DepEd has directed all public schools nationwide to conduct asynchronous learning from April 29 to April 30 due to the high heat index forecast of the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) and the announcement of a nationwide transport strike.

Private schools were not covered by the order but were given the option to implement the order.

Pagasa stated more parts in the country will have to endure a high heat index hitting a maximum between 45 degrees Celsius and 54.8 °C this May.

Some parts in the Cordillera, meanwhile, have a heat index value of 27 to 29 °C.