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Classes suspended at all levels in Manila and Rizal until Tuesday

September 27, 2009 11:33am
(UPDATED 6:53 p.m.) Classes in all levels in flood-affected areas in Metro Manila and nearby Rizal province are suspended until Tuesday in the wake of the destruction wrought by storm Ondoy, education officials announced Sunday.

Education Secretary Jesli Lapus declared that school sessions in metropolitan Manila including the cities of Antipolo, Cavite and Santa Rosa in Laguna, and the province of Rizal will be suspended until Tuesday.

Lapus said the governors of Laguna and Batangas have also suspended Monday classes in their provinces.

In an interview with dzBB radio, Laguna Governor Ningning Lazaro said most public schools have been converted into temporary shelter for hundreds of families displaced by the floods.

On GMA News’ Flash Report at 5:55 p.m. Connie Sison said the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) had also cancelled classes in Metro Manila and Rizal until Tuesday.

An earlier announcement from the National Disaster Coordinating Council (NDCC) suspended classes on Monday.
NO CLASSES. To avoid confusion among the public, NDCC chair Gilberto Teodoro Jr announced the suspension of classes in all levels in Metro Manila and Rizal province. GMANews.TV

NDCC chair Gilberto Teodoro Jr. suspended classes after tropical storm 'Ondoy' still left parts of Metro Manila and Rizal impassable to vehicles.

"Para hindi na malito ang mga tao, on my discretion minamabuti ko na na suspindihin ang klase on all levels sa Metro Manila isama na natin ang lalawigan ng Rizal (So as not to confuse the public, it was in my discretion to suspend classes on all levels in Metro Manila, including the province of Rizal)," Teodoro said.

But Teodoro did not say if government offices will also be closed on Monday.

The Commission on Higher Education earlier announced that classes in tertiary levels are suspended in the National Capital Region and Calabarzon (Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal and Quezon) area.

Laguna also declared the suspension of all classes in the primary and secondary levels.

In an interview with dzBB radio, Laguna Governor Ningning Lazaro said most public schools have become temporary shelter to the hundreds displaced by the floods.

While it moved farther away from the Philippine territory Sunday, tropical storm "Ondoy" (Ketsana) will still bring rains over parts of Luzon, state weather forecasters said.

In its 11 a.m. advisory, the Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) said storm signals in all areas had been canceled. [See: Pagasa lifts all Storm Signals in RP; more rains to follow as 'Ondoy' exits]

Teodoro said flood waters have not subsided in Cainta and Pasig, where the Pasig river overflowed at the height of Ondoy's downpour Saturday afternoon.

But rescue efforts are also hampered by the insistence of some residents to stay in their homes to protect their property. [See: NDCC focuses rescue efforts in Cainta, Pasig, Marikina]

"Ito po ang hindi kanais-nais na pangyayari, kung maaari ay sumama na lang sila (This is an unfortunate situation, if possible they should just come with us)," Teodoro said.

Marikina Mayor Marides Fernando was quoted in a television report as saying that the waters have slightly subsided in the area but many residents remain trapped in their homes.

The Marikina river, like many other bodies of water in Luzon, swelled on Saturday as 13.4 inches (34.1 centimeters) of rain fell on metropolitan Manila in just six hours, close to the 15.4-inch (39.2-centimeter) average for the entire month of September.

The NDCC is continuing its rescue, relief, and reassessment operations. But Teodoro has yet to issue an estimate of the damage brought by the tropical storm.

As of Sunday morning, Ondoy's death toll stood at 52, including 42 in the province of Rizal, the NDCC said. - GMANews.TV
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