2 Negros schools allowed to hold in-person classes

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Two colleges in Negros Occidental have been authorized by the Commission on Higher Education Region 6 to hold face to face classes.

Dr. Arnold Anceno, focal person of CHEd 6, said the Commission allowed Southland College in Kabankalan City and the Northern Negros State College Science and Technology in Sagay City to hold in-person classes for Nursing students and those taking up Diploma in Health Program courses.

Anceno added that there is no university or college in Bacolod City that has been granted permission by CHEd to hold face to face classes. He said the erratic quarantine status of the City prompted members of the evaluation committee to inspect first the schools outside of Bacolod.

Anceno said all Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) in Bacolod are now in the process of complying with the requirements for in-person classes. Possibly next week, the Commission can schedule an inspection and evaluation of HEIs in the city, he added.

There are 14 educational programs allowed to hold face to face classes, including Doctor of Medicine, College of Nursing, Medical Technology, Physical Therapy, Diploma in Bachelor of Science in Midwifery, Public Health, Pharmacy, Radio Technology, Speech Therapy, and Respiratory Therapy.

Anceno added that, two weeks ago, more programs were included in the list, namely Bachelor in Hospitality Management, Bachelor of Science in Hotel and Restaurant Management, Engineering Technology and Maritime programs.

The CHEd and national Inter-Agency Task Force are still discussing when to allow educational programs or courses with bigger student population to resume in-person classes.

Mark Molina, president of the Negros Occidental Private Schools Sports Cultural and Educational Association, said they are preparing for the inspection of CHEd while complying with the requirements of the local Inter-Agency Task Force.

He said most of the schools in Bacolod are ready to resume normal classes in selected educational programs for a limited period of time.

Molina added that since the first school semester is about to end, some of the schools may consider starting normal classes during the second semester in January or February 2022.

Anceno added that in a Joint Memorandum Circular, it was not specified that faculty members and students should be vaccinated against COVID-19 before the conduct of face to face classes. But it is highly encouraged for all HEIs to have their faculty vaccinated. — MML