DepEd: Field trips are not mandatory

MANILA — The education department has reminded parents, school officials and personnel that while educational field trips are meant to supplement classroom learning, joining them is not mandatory.

The department issued the reminder Wednesday, following the recent bus accident in Tanay, Rizal that claimed the lives of 14 students of Bestlink College, a teacher, and the driver. The students were to undergo medical and survival training at the Sacramento Adventure Camp in Tanay as part of the National Service Training Program.

Citing Department of Education (DepEd) Order No. 52 (2003), the department stated that no punitive measure will be imposed on students unable to join a field trip, who will instead be given activities to be done in school.

The order also notes that teachers must refrain from using field trips as basis for exams and that no field trip should be undertaken without the written consent of the parents or guardians.

The department meanwhile called on schools to plan educational tours well ahead of time, verify the proper registration and road-worthiness of the buses or vehicles to be used, ensure that drivers have the appropriate know-how and frame of mind when on the road, and discuss safety measures with students before the trip.

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