MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte apologized to parents on Monday for still opposing the conduct of even limited face-to-face classes as he could not afford to gamble with the lives of children, especially with the emergence of the COVID-19 Delta variant.
He said he also wanted “normalcy” for the education of children, but the presence of the more transmissible Delta variant prevented him from taking that step.
“I’m asking for forgiveness from mothers, fathers because the education of the children is being delayed. Forgive me because I can’t really give my permission for them to return to normal classes in schools,” Duterte said, speaking partly in Filipino, during his weekly Palace briefing on the COVID-19 situation.
“I cannot gamble with the life of our children,” he added.
In his briefing last week, he insisted he was not inclined to allow limited in-person classes because most people were still not vaccinated against COVID-19.
Due to the pandemic, the entire educational system shifted to distance learning under which learning modules and remote teaching through television, radio, and the internet are used.
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