Head of Information Technology, Guidance and Counselling Department at the Ghana International School, Christine Marble says interventions must be made to aid pre-tertiary students in their education while they await the re-opening of schools.
She said that both parents and schools alike should work at developing interventions that will help students retain all that has been taught them prior to the start of the extended home-stay brought on by the Coronavirus pandemic.
“There’s some sort of interventions that need to be made; whether it is by parents or school organised, so that students get to learn and they don’t forget, especially the little ones,” she said on JoyFM’s Super Morning Show.
Her comments come at the back of a directive by government for all pre-tertiary school students to remain at home until academic work is resumed in January 2021.
This is according to President Akufo-Addo’s 16th address to the nation on measures established to mitigate the spread of Covid-19, in which he announced that second-year Junior High and Senior High School students are to resume school in October.
All other students however are to remain at home until the beginning of 2021.
This decision has been met with mixed reactions; a section of the public including parents have lauded the directive, while others including the Association of Private Schools are opposed to the decision.
Parents have argued that since they cannot fully guarantee that their children will be able to observe the safety protocols strictly, it will be safer for them to stay at home, until the effects of the pandemic are fully or at the very least, largely mitigated.
Meanwhile, the Association of Private Schools insists going back to school in October is the best option as students will be safer under the care of their teachers and will have proper supervision at school.
The Association however added that students will be faced with the challenge of learning losses and catching up with their studies considering the long break from academic activities.
In this regard, Christine suggested that parents and even schools must make interventions to assist these students in learning while they wait at home to be reintegrated back into the academic system.
“Given the situation we’re in, I think a home-based sort of intervention may be best. We’re thinking of the safety of the children but [we also need some interventions] to kind of avoid the learning loss that is likely to happen,” she said.
She further said educating the students on the need to observe the Covid-19 safety protocols must be intensified to condition them towards strict compliance of the protocols when school starts.
“I think the strategy for us before January is to prime them. So a lot can be done in terms of education, whether it’s through the TVs, parents talking to the students about why the mask is important and how it’s blocking the germs from getting into our bodies and even practising it outside of the school situation.
“Because that’s a part of learning. If they can practice having this thing on their face they’re better able to adhere to it when they go back to school,” she added.