Guidelines for Sept. 2014 class opening readied

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Saturday, January 11, 2014

SHOULD the opening of classes from June to September this year push through, the Commission on Higher Education in Northern Mindanao (Ched-10) ensures it is ready and has been preparing the guidelines to implement the changes.

“Ched is also consulting some of the stakeholders on the shift of the opening of classes,” Zenaida Gersana said, director of Ched-10.

Gersana added that when Ched is done with the guidelines, they are hoping they can start the change for school year 2014-2015.


“The implementation of the new academic schedule is urgent,” said Gersana.

Climate change

Gersana said Ched has observed that in the past years schools could not immediately start their classes in June due to heavy rainfall and flooding.

“Ched decided to really implement the changes to adapt to climate change,” said Gersana, adding that the change is akin to the academic schedules of other countries.

She added that a lot of schools in Manila are already yearning for the changes.

“Ateneo de Manila is trying to inform Ched that there is really a need for them to start the school year this September,” said Gersana.

As the heavy rain dumps too much water, flooding has caused class suspensions, thus, special classes have been held by schools to cope with the required number of school days in an academic year.

She added that the number of class hours has usually been reduced due to the bad weather in the month of June.

Academic calendar

Gersana said Ched is still in the process of formulating the new academic calendar.

“Every year Ched submits a proposed academic calendar to schools,” said Gersana adding that if the plan to move the class opening in September hasn't become in demand it could have been disseminated already.

The Ched central office creates the academic calendar that will be distributed to schools and universities in the Philippines.

After the schools receive the academic calendar, Gersana said the schools will make their own calendar considering their own holidays and schedules and submit it to Ched.


Gersana said the change should be implemented by all schools in the country.

“What about the students who will transfer to other schools?” asked Gersana, pointing out the problem when some schools do not implement the shift on the schedule.

She added that Ched, the Department of Education (DepEd) and the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (Tesda) should come to an agreement when to start the classes.

“Sabot gyud dapat ang high school and college. Dili puwede nga mo-graduate ang high school sa March unya September pa mag-college,” she said.

Gersana said it is possible for some schools to continue with their summer classes, and others may propose to cancel summer classes and conduct advance classes equivalent to one semester.

XU research

Meanwhile, Xavier University (XU) has been anticipating the change on the class schedule, according to Catalina Hayrosa-Gaite, director of XU-Communications Office.

She said based on the study entitled “XU Survey on the Proposed
Synchronization of Academic Calendar with ASEAN,” the XU community favors the change.

The study was conducted by the ASEAN 2015 survey team.

“66.18 percent of the respondents favored the proposed shift,” said Gaite, adding the study surveyed 1,570 individuals.

Gaite said the study revealed that the XU community is in favor of the change due to synchronization.

“Synchronizing our academic schedule will help us establish linkages in academic institutions abroad,” she said.

“We cannot receive exchange students, and likewise, we cannot send the students that easy if our academic year is not synchronized in other countries,” said Gaite.

She said all of XU’s university partners abroad start their classes in August or September.

With regard to reasons cited in the survey, globalization and climate topped the list.

Gaite said the respondents wanted the change for the better citing the rainy season and globalization as reasons,” she added.

For those who disagreed with the change of schedule, Gaite said the respondents favored the familiarity with the existing calendar. "They also cited the change is inconvenient and will not make a difference."

Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on January 11, 2014.

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