Malacañang on Friday said the country’s pandemic task force had expressed strong support for the conduct of face-to-face (F2F) classes in all public and private schools for basic education.

“The Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) on Thursday, May 12, 2022, strongly supported the conduct of (F2F)classes for all public and private public institutions for basic education,” acting Palace spokesman Martin Andanar said in a statement.

Andanar said Covid-19 vaccination should not be made a requirement for participants of F2F classes.

“Instead the IATF strongly encouraged public and private educational institutions for basic education to undertake Covid-19 vaccination programs for their respective learners,” Andanar said.

“To provide an opportunity for children to be vaccinated, public educational institutions for basic education are enjoined to allow the Department of Health (DOH), in coordination with their respective local government units (LGUs), to facilitate the conduct of the Covid-19 vaccination programs within their premises,” he added.

Private educational institutions for basic education, Andanar said, may undertake vaccination programs in coordination with the DOH and the LGU concerned within their premises.

“The aforesaid Covid-19 vaccination programs shall be conducted with the informed consent given and signed by the parent/guardian, and the assent given by the learner pursuant to applicable DOH guidelines,” he said.

The DepEd has started resuming F2F classes in several regions of the country as Covid-19 cases started to decrease earlier in the year.

In-person basic education classes are allowed under Alert Level 1 and 2. John Ezekiel J. Hirro