top of page

Camarines Sur students laud switch to online classes amid extreme heat

By Lizel S. Macatangay

PILI, Camarines Sur --- Gov. Vincenzo Renato Villafuerte has directed the school heads, including those in higher education institutions, to switch to distance or asynchronous learning due to the intense heat being experienced throughout the province.

Villafuerte said the move was part of the interventions and strategies adopted by the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council to mitigate the risks posed by extreme heat in Camarines Sur.

According to the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration, the heat index in the capital town of Pili was expected to reach 42 degrees Celsius and 41°C on April 8 and 9.

“Aligned with this advisory, classes in all levels, both public and private, in the province of Camarines Sur shall adopt asynchronous classes/ distance learning effective Monday, April 8 until lifted,” Villafuerte stated in his memorandum.

Jay-Ar Fortunado, a student at Baao Community College (BCC), appreciated the governor’s directive as it aligned with his preferred asynchronous class routine.

“We all agree that extreme heat has different health effects. So definitely, I am in favor of the newly released memorandum from our dearest governor because it’s also for our own sake, for our health, so that we can avoid the diseases caused by excessive heat like dehydration, high blood pressure, and, of course, headaches,” Fortunado, 22, added.

Fortunado, of Duran, Balatan, resides some 33.6 km away or a 52-minute drive via the Nabua - Balatan Road. He has found that by participating in distance learning, he is not only preventing heat exhaustion but is also saving on transportation costs.

Fortunado believes that despite the challenges posed by the current situation, learning is still possible if students remain active and flexible.

“Let’s be thankful because our health is still a priority, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that because there’s no in-person class, we can’t learn. We know that it’s our choice if we want to learn. It’s a matter of being active and flexible. Most of us are already familiar with the asynchronous class, so we can continue to learn and thrive,” Fortunado said.

Giacynth Sta. Ana, a 20-year-old English Major from the same school, also supports the decision to implement distance learning during this period of abnormally hot weather.

She is accustomed to heat in a tropical country, but the recent extreme heat has made it difficult to concentrate in class, she said.

“The extreme heat has been affecting her physical and mental well-being, making it hard to focus and be productive,” she added.

She believes that distance learning is the best way to ensure the safety and well-being of students while still allowing them to continue with their studies.

Sta. Ana underscored that distance learning is an ideal option for students like her who must manage the temperature inside the classroom alongside other students.

Located in Baao, Camarines Sur, BCC has about 6,100 students.

According to Sta. Ana, distance learning is a suitable solution that creates a comfortable learning environment without the distraction and discomfort caused by extreme heat.

It also prioritizes the health and safety of students by reducing the risk of heat-related illnesses, she said.

Additionally, it provides flexibility and convenience, allowing students to access resources from the comfort of their own homes, Sta. Ana added.

“By embracing this alternative, we can overcome the challenges of the heat wave and promote effective learning,” she said.

Villafuerte made it clear that although teaching and non-teaching personnel are not obligated to report to their stations while the memorandum is in effect, those involved in essential services may need to report to ensure the continuity of service delivery.

In line with the governor’s directive, BCC College Administrator, Macel Peñero, has instructed his personnel to ensure that teachers requiring attendance and students attending face-to-face exams are assisted.

Peñero has directed BCC staff to provide water dispensers at the two-story building and another building to ensure that students and teachers have easy access to potable water and stay hydrated during the hot weather.

The provincial government is managing BCC along with four other community colleges. (PIA5)

Jay-Ar Fortunado, a Baao Community College (BCC) expressed his appreciation of the governor’s directive. (Photo credit|| JFortunado) Giacynth S. Sta, Ana, a 20-year-old BSE English Major at Baao Community College said she is thankful that the extreme heat causes exhaustion and hampers their learning. Photo credit II GStaAna


bottom of page