Screenshot from Junta Barita (L-R) WPU president Julie Hope Evina, former president Dr. Elsa Palao-Manarpaac, and Dr. Sotico Santillan director for External Campuses


The Western Philippines University (WPU), one of Palawan’s two state universities, said it will rely more on the “modular” learning system rather than online methods when classes resumes on October 5.

This is mainly because based on its recent survey, only one out of every three of its students have access to fast internet and only around 14 percent own a laptop, making online learning a difficult proposition.

WPU president Julie Hope Evina said their school is not yet ready for online learning.

“Sa enrollment pa lang, may digital divide na. Struggling na agad ang mga estudyante sa online pa lang. Hanggang ngayon nahihirapan pa rin, lalo na mga incoming first year students sa malalayong lugar,” she told members of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan Tuesday.

She also noted in a presentation that majority of their students come from households with an income below P10,000.

Based on their assessment, she said the institution decided to adapt a “flexible learning” system, using only 35% of online learning and 65% modular learning.

Meanwhile, officials of WPU and the Palawan State University were also requested by Board Member Cherry Pie Acosta to submit a position paper on a proposal to move the opening of classes to January next instead of October this year.

“May proposal ako, tingin ko applicable sa DepEd at applicable sa CHED dahil sa kinakaharap nating pandemiya,” said Acosta. “

“Are you amenable to this? Nakita natin na hindi pala talaga puwede, halos lahat walang gadget, maski mga teacher,” she added.