SECTION 23. Medium of Instruction.—The Department shall promulgate rules and the regulations on the medium of instruction for all schools in accordance with the policy declared in Section 7, Article XIV of the Constitution.
SECTION 24. School Year.—(1) The school year for public and private schools shall consist of not less than forty (40) weeks for the elementary and secondary levels, and thirty-six (36) weeks for the college level or eighteen (18) weeks a semester.
2) The opening date shall be fixed by the Secretary, but it shall not be earlier than the first day of June nor later than the last day of July of each year unless prevented by fortuitous events.
3) The long school vacation period shall likewise be fixed by the Secretary taking into consideration the convenience of the pupils and the special climatic conditions prevailing during the said period.
4) The dates established for the long school vacation shall not be changed oftener than once every five (5) years without prior public hearing properly advertised in a newspaper of general circulation or announced by the school authorities concerned.
SECTION 25. School Holidays.—All schools, whether public or private, shall not hold classes on public holidays, whether regular or special. On holidays especially proclaimed by the President, the schools in the municipality, city or province affected by the proclamation shall not hold classes. The Secretary may, by reason of public calamity or emergency, order the closure of any school, public or private, as may have been affected thereby for such period as necessity may demand.
SECTION 26. School Sessions.—The regular daily sessions of all public and private schools shall be held during the hours fixed by the Secretary or his duly authorized representatives. Except in college, no class sessions shall be held on Saturdays, Sundays, or holidays unless to offset class sessions suspended by competent authority.
SECTION 27. School Rituals.—(1) School rituals prepared and prescribed by the Secretary shall be observed in all public and private elementary and secondary schools in the Philippines.
2) The school rituals shall consist of solemn and patriotic mass singing of the Philippine National Anthem and the recitation of prescribed patriotic pledges.
3) The rituals shall be held in school premises as often as may be practicable under the direction of the respective school authorities.
SECTION 28. Flag Ceremony.—(1) All educational institutions shall observe a simple and dignified flag ceremony, including the playing or singing of the Philippine National Anthem.
2) The flag ceremony shall be conducted under the rules and regulations issued by the Secretary.
3) Failure or refusal to observe the flag ceremony in accordance with the rules and regulations issued by the Secretary shall, after proper notice and hearing, subject the educational institution concerned and its head to public censure as an administrative punishment, which shall be published at least once in a newspaper of general circulation.
4) Failure to observe for the second time the said flag ceremony shall, after notice and hearing, be a ground for the cancellation of the recognition or the permit of the private educational institution concerned.
5) Any teacher or student or pupil who refuses to join or participate in the flag ceremony may be dismissed after due investigation.
SECTION 29. Local School Boards.—In every province, city or municipality, there shall be established a Provincial School Board, City School Board and Municipal School Board, respectively, whose composition, powers, functions and duties shall be provided by law.