At the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Philippine education sector was among the hardest hit. Students, educators, and schools were forced to adopt a virtual teaching setup to continue with the school year – as face-to-face classes were canceled due to safety concerns. 

Although the latter half of 2020 saw an easing of conditions, 2021 is seeing an abrupt increase in new COVID-19 infections, particularly in the National Capital Region. 

The significant jump in new cases forced areas in ‘NCR Plus’ – Metro Manila, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, and Rizal – to be placed under enhanced community quarantine (ECQ), which started on March 29 and has been extended until April 11

Due to the alarming rate of new infections in the Greater Manila region, student bodies and councils are rallying together for an extension of the academic break. 

Student organizations from the De La Salle University (DLSU), the Polytechnic University of the Philippines (PUP), and the University of the Philippines Diliman (UP Diliman) have banded together to call on their individual academes to prioritize the safety and welfare of students as well as faculty members during the current influx of COVID-19 cases in the Philippines. 

In its formal letter of appeal to the administration, the De La Salle University University Student Government (DLSU USG) highlighted the need for classes to be suspended until April 12. 

If the request can not be granted, the student government is asking for the easing of requirements.


The University Student Government (USG) has forwarded its comprehensive proposal together with its…

Posted by DLSU USG on Sunday, April 4, 2021

Meanwhile, the PUP College of Accountancy and Finance Student Council (PUP-CAF) emphasized in its plea that ‘students and professors, our primary stakeholders’ are not ‘mentally’ and ‘physically’ equipped to start the new semester. 

The student council warned that if these concerns were to be disregarded, it could induce strain on the well-being of instructors and the students. 

The student body asked the university to extend the academic break until April 11 and is demanding issues and requirements from the previous semester to be dismissed.


Posted by PUP CAF Student Council on Saturday, April 3, 2021

In a joint petition, UP Diliman, UP Los Baños, UP Manila, and UP Visayas are requesting deadlines to be removed throughout the new semester with endorsement from the UP Office of the Student Regent (UP OSR).

#SulongUP: We support the students of our UP units! Suspend online classes! Do better, UP!

In the past week, Enhanced…

Posted by UP Office of the Student Regent on Sunday, April 4, 2021

Last night, the #LigtasNaBalikEskwela trended on Twitter in support of the academic break extension. 

At the helm was the youth organization College Editors of the Philippines (CEGP), who called on the government to ensure a safe and gradual return to classes for both students and educators. 

Besides this, they also requested Php 10,000 in aid as well as free and safe vaccines for all. 

LOOK: Youth groups took to social media to urge the Duterte government to ensure gradual and safe resumption of physical…

Posted by College Editors Guild of the Philippines on Monday, April 5, 2021

Want more news like this one? Head over to Nation Builder PH Breaking News Section for the latest updates.

Image credit: Ryan Eduard Benaid via Getty Images