Why classes in the Philippines should open in September

Since many of the old articles of this site were lost, I am posting this again as it has become relevant with some schools already saying that they are opening classes either in August or September.

I wrote this last September, before the news about schools looking at a later opening date, have come out.  Here it is:




After the awards ceremony of the two-man team event of the Alta Vista Golf and Country Club Junior Golf Committee last Saturday, I had a chance to sit down for some dads, who share a passion for sports.

Well, the group was mainly pushing for junior golf, but then we also discussed other sports and how our country is faring in international events.

While there is a strong clamor for more competitions to be held in order to push sports and government support for the sports programs, I pointed out one area which we badly need to address.

Yes, we need to build more facilities to allow more people to play.  Yes, we need to shorten the class schedules if we want school-age kids to spend time to do sports.

More importantly, we should push for the moving of the opening of classes to September, which is also the time that classes in most places around the world start.

Why do I say this?

While many parents and organizations in the Philippines are putting so much effort and resources to develop our children, it seems very difficult to let them compete in the international events without sacrificing their education.

This is because our classes start in June when classes in many countries end as summer (yes, the season not the summer that is just the dry season in our country) starts there.

With summer abroad comes the many sporting events and our kids, who would get invitations to join in these competitions would have to go through the difficult process of getting permission from the school and making up for missed classes and exams after the competition.  Not only that, many have to raise funds to finance their trip.

If our bright people at the Department of Education, who wisely implemented the K-12 program, would just think a little more they would probably also push for the September opening not just because the rainy season (well this is an old reason) starts in June.

If we have our class schedules similar to most countries, then we would not have to worry about the children missing school when they compete abroad.

When the Cebu Football Association presented the four kids from Don Bosco Technology Center (DBTC), who earned slots to a football training in the United Kingdom, the matter of getting their school to say yes was brought up.

The kids also said that part of their luggage were their school books as they were instructed to do some reading while away for three weeks.

I’m sure those who have children, who had to go abroad for sports can relate to this matter.

We, parents of children who are into sports, should make our move and encourage the DepEd to move the opening of classes to September.

If they would insist on doing K-12 with very limited resources, the DepEd officials might also see the logic of starting our classes together with the rest of the world.


Nimrod Quinones

Nimrod Lebumfacil Quiñones is a veteran sports journalist based in Cebu. He started as a correspondent for the sports section of The Freeman in 1989 while he was still in college and became the assistant sports editor a year after. In 1993, he took over as sports editor of the paper, which he held until 2004 when he moved to the business process outsourcing sector for a few months. In 2005, he returned to The Freeman as managing editor, but continued to write a sports column until he moved to Alta Vista Golf and Country Club to serve as its general manager in September 1, 2012. As an athlete, he played football and volleyball for his school team and represented Cebu in various national and regional judo tournaments. The author is also a sportsman, who currently sits as director in the board of the Cebu Volleyball Association (CEVA) and the Cebu Football Association (CFA). He is also the longest-serving commissioner of the Cebu City Sports Commission (CCSC) having been appointed to the position by Mayor Alvin Garcia in 1998, then by Mayor Tomas Osmeña in 2001 until 2010, and in 2010 to 2013 by Mayor Michael Rama. He is also currently the acting president of the Cebu Chapter of the Philippine Judo Federation and a holder of a 1st Arts Association. For fun, the author dabbles in golf, biking, pistol shooting, and photography. dan blackbelt. The author is also a life member of the United States Martial

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