BY CARLA P. GOMEZ
Enrollment in private schools under the Negros Occidental Schools Division has dropped by more than one half, a Department of Education official said yesterday.
Enrollment in the private schools was at 41.78 percent compared to last year, while in public schools it was at 94.07 percent, Richard Martinez, planning officer of the division, said in a virtual press conference yesterday.
Schools Division Superintendent Marsette Sabbaluca said they are set for the implementation of distance learning modalities as classes in public schools and some private schools start on October 5 amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Martinez said that in private schools in the division, enrollment as of Monday was at 41.78 percent with 12,034 students compared to 28,800 last school year.
In private schools for school year 2020-2021 enrollment in kindergarten was at 597 or 30.41 percent, elementary – 1,989 or 35.74 percent, junior high school 7,348 or 49.05 percent, senior high school – 2,099 or 33.37 percent and learner with disabilities one or 100 percent, he said.
Some private schools began classes as early as August 24 while others will open on October 5, Ian Arnold Arnaez, Negros Occidental schools division public information officer, said.
In public schools enrollment was at 94.07 percent with 303,218 students as of Monday compared to 322,346 last school year.
Public schools enrollment for kindergarten as of Monday was 21,835 or 96.21 percent, elementary – 155,277 or 92.41 percent, junior high school – 94,463 or 92.55 percent, senior high school – 30,843 or 107.25 percent and learners with disabilities – 800 or 100.38 percent.
There are 826 schools under the Negros Occidental schools divisions of which 139 are private and 687 are public, Arnaez said.
Martinez said the drop in the enrollment in private schools is probably due to the fact that the teaching modalities they are offering are the same as in public schools.
The DepEd alternative learning modalities include modular, television and radio-based instruction, and online.
Arnaez said 628 schools under the Negros Occidental Schools Division, or the majority, have opted for modular distance learning.
Modular distance learning is in the form of individualized instruction that allows learners to use self-learning modules (SLMs) in print or digital format/electronic copy, whichever is applicable in the context of the learner and other learning resources like learner’s materials, textbooks, activity sheets, study guides and other study materials, Arnaez said.*