The Luzon-wide enhanced community quarantine brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic prompted the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) to release an advisory last April 13, 2020 detailing additional policies and guidelines that all higher education institutions must adhere to during the ECQ.
Among the guidelines mentioned are “the deployment of available flexible learning and other alternative modes of delivery in lieu of in-campus learning if they have the resources to do so.”
In addition, HEIs are authorized to determine strategies for its students with regard to the completion of a subject or degree program. “HEIs may undertake alternative assessments and remediations and consider student assessment and computation of grades to be based on current student records and school academic policies.”
The CHED memo also stated that “the learning delivery mode during the extended ECQ will depend on the available resources of the HEI and students. Students who lack connectivity during the ECQ period shall be allowed to complete their curricular requirements after the ECQ.”
HEIs have responded to the challenges posed by the pandemic and have implemented various approaches to learning during the Luzon-wide quarantine. Some institutions are likewise preparing for a possible extended closure as the country sets recovery measures from the lockdown.
Among the universities that have crafted measures are University of Santo Tomas, which makes use of their learning management system to continue classes online in order to finish the term by June, and Far Eastern University, which has adopted an alternative learning scheme for the duration of their term.
For its part, De La Salle University has undertaken various initiatives in compliance with the CHED guidelines. During the ongoing trimester, DLSU students were given the option to complete their requirements online or defer their subjects until such time as they are able to do so and the quarantine has been lifted. Those who opt to defer their subjects can complete their requirements within one year. Moreover, no student will receive a failing grade this term.
In addition, DLSU announced rebates on tuition and fees for the ongoing term and will offer tuition discounts and more payment options for the succeeding term. It also extends psychological and connectivity support to students and other members of the academic community, as it seeks to alleviate the impact of the pandemic on their families.
“The University adopted the said measures in the spirit of compassion and understanding, knowing that everyone is going through this pandemic differently and may not be able to participate in learning during the ECQ,” says DLSU Vice Chancellor for Academics Dr. Robert Roleda.