The city legislative body approved a resolution earnestly requesting Baguio-based schools, universities, colleges and training centers to grant tuition fee discounts to all their currently enrolled students who are affected by the disruption of their classes due to the implementation of the extended Luzonwide enhanced community quarantine (ECQ).

Further, the resolution authored by all members of the city legislative body requested the Department of Education, Commission on Higher Education (CHED) and Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) to do the acknowledgement of schools under their supervision that will adopt and implement the said endeavor.

The resolution admitted that the imposed ECQ has not only disrupted classes in all levels but also the livelihood and income of parents and guardians supporting the studies of their children and wards, thus, significantly affecting their capacity to pay the school fees.

While the city government acknowledges that universities, colleges and other training centers are not spared from the negative impact of the class and regular work schedule disruptions, the resolution pointed out that their stability as established benevolent institutions is a huge advantage, assuring the institutions of faster rate of recovery from this economic and health crisis, thus to give consideration to the students.

Because of the impact of the COVID global pandemic, President Rodrigo Duterte declared the whole country under public health emergency and placed the entire Luzon under ECQ aside from declaring the nation under a state of calamity.

Earlier, the city government suspended classes in all levels for both private and public schools in the city from March 13-21, 2020 to allow school authorities to sanitize and dis-infect classrooms and facilities to prevent the possible spread of the highly contagious virus.

Moreover, President Duterte accepted the recommendation of the inter-agency task force on the management of emerging and re-emerging infectious disease extending the Luzonwide ECQ until April 30, 2020, as a precautionary measure to stump the rapid spread of the virus that also extended the suspension of classes indefinitely.

Subsequently, the city government issued a follow-up order extending class suspension in all levels for both public and private schools and other institutions and centers of learning in the city until May 31, 2020, as one of the stringent measures being embraced to protect the city and its residents from the continuous spread of the deadly illness.

The resolution also requested the different universities, colleges and other training centers to devise a scheme where the enrolled students can complete their studies under different platforms that could be used for the said purpose to allow the students to complete their remaining class schedules without sacrificing the quality of education.

The approved resolution will be forwarded to the different public and private institutions and the concerned government agencies in charge of basic and higher education for their information and guidance.

- By Dexter A. See via PIO BAGUIO (24 April 2020)

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