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Editorial | Parents take the front seat

With so much uncertainty on the opening of classes, parents are divided over the Department Education’s earlier pronouncement that classes will open on August 24 this school year or the directive of President Rodrigo Duterte to open classes only when a vaccine is available. As Councilor Pilar Braga, Committee on Education chair, said, education is important but the safety of the children who will be exposed to the virus is more important.

We have read news about how schools in South Korea had to close down after pupils were reported to have contracted the virus.

Most parents do not want to risk the safety of their children just so they can go to school.

Former president of the Philippine Press Institute, Alfonso Pedroche, has an interesting take on the subject. He said “as classes are suspended, uncertain of when they will resume, parents, particularly those who depend heavily on surrogates to care for their children must now be hands-on in rearing the souls entrusted to them by God.

“Education is vital to every soul to mold their character and their mettle to contribute to the growth of the society where they live. If our own parents were remiss in their duty to rear us well, we will not stand where we are today.

“Thus, if our lives were a failure now, the parents have their share of the blame as they should have been the first mentors of their offspring.

“In the face of hard times, both father and mother may need to work to earn their keep for the upkeep of their families. Yes, that’s perfect but not to the point of parentally neglecting a child’s character shaping.

“Quality time spent with your children is the seed of moral uprightness that you plant so they will grow up to be Godly persons.

“Today, there will no longer be teachers to mentor them except you, the appointed caretakers and caregivers of your children. The old saying goes: “Children are God’s gifts to parents and what the children become is the parents’ gift to God.”

So as we wait for the vaccine to be available, parents should use this precious time to teach their children values and life skills which, in the end, will prepare them for adulthood.

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