Prohibiting Students Inside I-Cafés

The Department of Education (DepEd) issued DepEd Order No. 86, s. 2010 entitled Prohibiting Students In Public And Private Elementary And Secondary Schools From Going To Computer Shops, Malls, Theaters And The Likes During Their Class Hours last June 18, 2010. The order is in response to prevailing issue of truancy among students who cut their classes and spend time in entertainment areas instead of attending their classes. The DepEd Regional Directors, Schools Division and City Superintendents, Private and Public Elementary and Secondary Schools Heads and All Others Concerned (presumably including i-café owners) are ordered to take steps to prevent elementary and high school students from going to entertainment areas mentioned in the order during their class hours.

The department order suggested that the school officials coordinate with the local government officials in their areas for the enactment of ordinances that will cover the implementation of distance provision of Internet cafés, malls, theaters and the likes from schools and ordering the owners of the said establishments not to allow entry of students during their class hours. The school officials are also ordered to provide the students with the certified true copies of their class schedules so that the owners of the establishments can check them before the students are allowed to enter and use their facilities.

The Education Secretary also urged the school officials and teachers to provide their students with worthwhile and productive activities, particularly those that can enhance the creative and communicative skills such as debate or their creative skills such as dramatic activities and theatrical programs, which can be done during the free time of the students in school.

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