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QC bans students in Internet cafés during school hours


Following the poor performance of Quezon City schools in the National Achievement Test, the city's local government has issued a resolution banning students from going to computer shops during class hours.
 
In an interview on GMA News TV's State of the Nation with Jessica Soho on Wednesday night, Quezon City Councilor Bong Suntay blamed the deteriorating academic performance of students in their city to video games.
 
"We realized that one of the probable cause mainly dahil marami kaming estudyanteng nakikita sa loob ng mga Internet cafes during school hours," he said.
 
He noted that students are now only allowed to enter the computer shops from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. on school days.
 

Suntay also warned that authorities will conduct a surprise inspection, and the shop owners who will be caught violating the new order for the first time will be given a warning. However, second-time offenders will be slapped with a P3,000 fine or a one-month suspension of their permit. 
 
Meanwhile, owners who will be caught violating for the third time, a closure order on their establishment will be ordered by the city government, he warned.
 
For his part, Department of Education Assistant Secretary Tonisito Umali said cutting classes leads to the decline of student performance in class.
 
"Hindi mahirap isipin na ang performance ng ating mag-aaral ay bababa kung sila ay hindi nag-aaral sa mga oras na itinakda na dapat sila ay mag-aaral," he said. "Hindi mahirap isipin na bababa ang kanilang performance sa klase, hindi lang sa NAT scores kung hindi nila napapakinggan ang mga leksyon."
 
Meanwhile, the report said in 2010, the DepEd has released a circular banning students in elementary and high school in computer shops, malls, and other similar establishments during school hours.
 
The students who will be caught will be reprimanded or suspended, the report added.
 
On the other hand, Michael Baltazar, a computer shop owner in Quezon City, admitted that he has allowed students in his computer shop during school hours.
 
"Magagalit naman sa'min (if they are banned), lilipat ng ibang shop," he said.
 
Meanwhile, the same report quoted a psychologist as saying parents should guide their children and inform them the importance of education. — Amanda Fernandez/RSJ, GMA News
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