DAVAO CITY, Philippines—The Department of Education issued a moratorium order on field trips and other similar activities in both public and private schools across the country.

DepEd Memorandum No. 47, series 2017, which was issued on March 9, according to DepEd, will be observed by all public elementary and secondary schools until the review and revision of related policies have been finalized.

The education department said the review covers alignment of field trips and other co-curricular activities with that of DepEd’s priorities ensuring the security and safety of learners, and reinforcing the responsibilities and accountability, not only of schools, but also of parents and other government agencies and its partners.

“As the primary institution mandated to ensure access to quality basic education, it is imperative for the Department to look after the security and safety of learners in its education-related activities,” DepEd Secretary Leonor Briones said.

DM No. 47 was issued by the education department following the tragic bus accident involving college students in Tanay, Rizal.

DepEd said schools with approved permits and finalized contracts for the conduct of educational field trips prior to the moratorium may still proceed with the activity, “provided that existing guidelines, especially on safety and security measures, are strictly observed.”

The policies of DepEd on field trip reiterate that it is not mandatory nor compulsory. The policies on educational tours are based on DepEd Orders No. 56 s. 2001, No. 51 s. 2002, and No. 52 s. 2003.

“Schools are ordered to refrain from conducting punitive activities that put to disadvantage or affect the academic standing of students who are unable to join,” it said.  (davaotoday.com)

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