HYBRID LEARNING. The Department of Education is leaving the decision to school principals to choose the best learning mode during the summer months due to rising temperatures. In Negros Oriental, some schools have opted to adopt the Alternative Delivery Mode while others continue with their regular in-person classes. (PNA file photo)

DUMAGUETE CITY – School principals have the discretion to decide the best learning mode for their learners during the summer months amid the hot and humid conditions, a key Department of Education (DepEd) official said on Friday.

Dr. Salustiano Jimenez, DepEd 7 (Central Visayas) director, told the Philippine News Agency (PNA) that “school principals have the discretion to decide what is the best arrangement for their students and each day is different, depending on the current weather conditions.”

He said schools have the option to adopt the Alternative Delivery Mode (ADM), where on some days and at certain hours, the learners come to school and on other days work on their modules from home.

Some schools have implemented such setup, as the heat index has risen to as high as 42 degrees Celsius, the highest heat index recorded on May 17 in Dumaguete City.

However, Jimenez said not all schools in Negros Oriental are undertaking the ADM, based on reports reaching his office and monitoring by the different DepEd district offices.

This is because some schools are situated on higher ground, surrounded by trees and with a cool environment, he added.

Also, some schools have electric fans, which Jimenez said are either procured internally or are donated by parent-teacher associations or kind-hearted individuals.

“We are undertaking the location-situation-based approach and so there is no definite pattern for every school each day, as we continue to monitor the daily heat index,” he said.

Because of this, it is difficult for DepEd to give even a ballpark figure on the number of public schools implementing a hybrid learning mode.

Jimenez said there is no time frame for the hybrid or ADM learning methods for so long as the rising temperatures continue to ensure that no learner will suffer from heat stroke or similar conditions. (PNA)