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Solon joins the call for a national academic health break.

Following the exceptional spike in infections amid the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) pandemic, a lawmaker in the House of Representatives encouraged public and private education stakeholders to heed the need for a national academic health break and academic ease.

Quezon City is a city in the Philippines. In a resolution, Rep. Alfred Vargas stated that in light of the increase in coronavirus infections, the Department of Education (DepEd) and the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) should impose more fair workloads and standards.

“With the alarming rise in Covid-19 cases affecting our fellow Filipinos’ mental well-being and family financial capacity – as well as our learners’ and students’ capacity to cope and adjust in a healthy way,” he said, “government must explore innovative, compassionate, and proactive programs and policies that address these real concerns.”

The pandemic, according to Vargas, is “as much a mental health issue as it is a physical health issue.”

He stated that the government and other sectors must collaborate to assist individuals, families, and communities in coping with pandemic-related stress or recovering from the disease’s negative consequences.

He claims that the emergence of the highly transmissible Omicron form has harmed the lives and well-being of millions of learners, students, parents, and instructors across the country, prompting some academic organizations to demand an ‘academic health break’ or ‘academic ease.’

Vargas claimed there has been a recorded increase in the number of teachers, students, and parents falling ill since the start of school last January 3, citing claims from the Quezon City Public School Teachers Association (QCPSTA) and other organizations.

Several colleges, he added, have responded to the need for an academic health break so that students, parents, and professors may focus on their health and well-being.

Vargas expressed hope that the appeal will be heard by the appropriate bodies and institutions.

“Despite the changing policy environment of this epidemic, the DepEd and CHED have been supportive of learners’ and teachers’ physical and mental health care requirements, recognizing the need to prioritize physical and mental resilience and well-being,” he said.

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