Classes resume in schools affected by law enforcement operation in Maguindanao
Cotabato City (06 March 2015) – The Department of Education-Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (DepEd-ARMM) confirmed that classes have resumed in schools affected by joint law enforcement operation of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and Philippine National Police (PNP) in Maguindanao.
ARMM Education Secretary Jamar Kulayan said classes in all 34 affected schools including the nine that serve as evacuation centers are now back to normal.
“Classes in evacuation centers are still on-going although the classrooms are used by the evacuees during night time,” Kulayan said.
He said they have also successfully administered the conduct of the National Achievement Test (NAT) in the province on Thursday.
The military offensive that started 27 February disrupted the schooling of more than 14,000 elementary and secondary students in 8 towns in the province.
Kulayan, who visited some of the affected towns on Wednesday, said some of the affected schools are requesting to hold the graduation rites earlier than the original schedule of 26-27 March.
ARMM Governor Mujiv Hataman had earlier directed the region’s DepEd to order the immediate resumption of classes when possible.
“I directed the education secretary na ikutin ang lahat ng apektadong eskwelahan. Nakita naman natin ang sitwasyon na medyo normal na. Baka pwede nang kausapin ang mga guro sa ibang lugar na dapat magklase na sila at wag na nilang i-collateral damage,” he said.
The joint law enforcement operation affected the towns of Shariff Saydona, Mamasapano, Datu Unsay, Shariff Aguak, Datu Salibo, Rajah Buayan, Datu Hoffer and Datu Saudi, displacing more than 40,000 individuals. (Bureau of Public Information)