‘We have to come back,’ VPAA says as Letran moves from Hyflex to Split Modality

By: Reigh John Bench Almendras, Andrea Eleanor Cabaron
January 17, 2023

Letranites are back in classes through a 50-50 split mode of learning adhering to CHED's Memorandum Number 16 of 2022. Photo courtesy of the Colegio de San Juan de Letran- Manila.

The Colegio no longer requires Hyflex Modality to be conducted on all college programs starting the second semester of the current academic year after the release of Commission on Higher Education (CHED) Memorandum Number 16 series of 2022 and the Vice President for Academic Affairs (VPAA) Memorandum 015-AY 2022-2023. 

Memorandum Number 16 of CHED with the subject "Updates on Onsite Learning in Higher Education" no longer allows Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) to hold full online modality starting the second semester of the Academic Year 2022-2023.

According to the VPAA's Memorandum, the new semester calls for a 50/50 split of in-person and online sessions. There are also specific courses from the College of Engineering and Technology (CEIT) and College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (CLAS) that require students to have full onsite classes. 

“We have to come back,” Assoc. Prof. Cristina M. Castro-Cabral, Ph.D., Letran’s VPAA states in an interview with The Lance about the upcoming onsite classes. She also mentioned that students with reasonable excuses can be catered simultaneously with onsite students but will depend on the availability of the Hyflex classrooms and the decision of the professors.

Professors are only encouraged to utilize the modality based on the availability of the 19 Hyflex classrooms of the Colegio.

Concerns and Praises from Letranites

Cassandra Abalos, a student from the College of Business Administration and Accounting (CBAA) says in an interview with The LANCE, “Hyflex Modality is super tiring and hassle sa mga students especially sa mga nakatira sa malalayong lugar since ang schedule ay alternate."

Abalos adds the Hyflex modality can aid in lessening interaction between Letranites since the pandemic is ongoing.

“Para po sa akin, if yung type ng program does not entirely require f2f modality they can stay in the full online set-up and those programs na nagrerequire ng f2f set-up sila lang po yung attend ng classes physically sa Colegio,” Abalos also says in the interview.

Kristine Sofia Cruz, another student from the CBAA, says the Hyflex Modality is convenient since there are students who are living further away from The Colegio.

Cruz also shares her concern regarding the rare usage of the Hyflex Modality “...Para sa akin, ready naman ako if tatanggalin yung Hyflex Modality kasi babalik lang naman talaga tayo sa normal learning modality, [pero] hindi pa rin naman talaga completely free ang Philippines sa COVID and may risk pa rin, so sa tingin ko much better na naka-Hyflex pa rin and if possible na bigyan ng choice yung students anong modality yung gusto nilang gamitin.”

Francis Eclevia, a CLAS student, shares their woes regarding the preparation of full-onsite classes in Letran. “Well, yung unang hurdle talaga para sa akin yung uniform requirements.” Francis Eclevia also adds “So yung gupit ng buhok, kulay ng buhok at pagtanggal ng hikaw, it feels super gross for me.” 

Richard Aquino, a student from the College of Education (COED), also believes the Hyflex Modality is a challenge to both students and the faculty. He supports the decision of the Colegio in the split approach with classes in consideration of the persisting pandemic.

Aquino is also looking forward to the Colegio lessening its carbon footprint by conducting online examinations for General Education subjects, the construction of the Colegio's Gymnasium for Physical Education activities, and a more challenging semester as professors are expected to recalibrate their teaching approaches. 

The Colegio launched the Let's Flex Hyflex Modality in July 2022 as part of the resumption of limited face-to-face classes. The modality provides four frames. Frame A for onsite connection, Frame B for remote connection and synchronous setup, Frame C for remote connection and asynchronous setup, and Frame D for offline asynchronous setup. It was created to simultaneously cater students from online and onsite in one academic session.

The Colegio starts the 50/50 split approach in modalities across all programs on January 16, 2023.