THE Department of Education (Deped) has already completed the list of 100 public schools that will participate in the pilot testing of limited face-to-face classes, which will push through on November 15, 2021.

DepEd Secretary Leonor Briones said on Wednesday, November 3, that the participating schools are from the following regions:

* Ilocos – 10

* Central Luzon – 10

* Calabarzon – 5

* Bicol – 9

* Western Visayas – 3

* Central Visayas – 8

* Eastern Visayas – 10

* Zamboanga Peninsula – 8

* Northern Mindanao – 10

* Davao Region – 8

* Soccsksargen – 5

* Caraga – 14

She said they are still identifying 20 private schools that will join the pilot run of in-person classes.

Briones said face-to-face classes will begin on November 15 for public schools and November 22 for private schools.

She said they have already secured the approval of the respective local government units, as well as the consent of the parents whose children will be part of the pilot run.

Briones also assured the safety of both the teaching staff and students amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic.

She said 90 percent of the school staff involved in the pilot run have already received at least one dose of Covid-19 vaccines.

The DepEd earlier said that as a preventive measure, teachers joining the face-to-face classes should be fully vaccinated.

DepEd Director Malcolm Garma said 317 out of the 444 school personnel in the participating schools were fully vaccinated.

The pilot run will be assessed by the end of December and will end on January 31, 2022.

By February 2022, the DepEd, after the evaluation and assessment of the initial pilot run, will present to President Rodrigo Duterte the expansion of in-person classes, which will start on March 7, 2022. (SunStar Philippines)