Imo and the challenges of school resumption

Governor Hope Uzodimma

The government of Imo State has announced that schools resume in Imo state today. This came as a surprise to many notwithstanding that many others have craved and clamoured for it. The government had stated earlier that they were carrying out Covid-19 test in all the communities before they can resume schools but suddenly the same government made a volte-face leaving the people wondering if the community testing has been concluded in less than a month.
It was observed that teachers who are critical stakeholders in this business were not carried along drawing from comments from some of them. The question agitating the minds of parents is that they are in the dark as to the level of preparedness of the government in providing the support for the observance of the COVID-19 protocols even though they were asking the teachers to ensure compliance in their directive.
Education and health are critical areas of concern to any government and government are expected to put its best foot forward in fashioning out policies that promote its development. The impact of COVID-19 globally is very well known to all and it is not expected that the authorities would approach it with kid gloves or just paying lip service to it. Children are precious assets to their parents and their education as leaders of tomorrow is very important thus all the concerns expressed on schools re-opening.
Readiness for school reopening after a six month period should go beyond providing the physical facilities to support the observance of the Covid-19 protocols. It includes readying the teachers psychologically so that they would be in a good frame of mind to deliver on their expectations. If the teachers are not prepared psychologically the children certainly would be short-changed in what they receive.
Again it is not yet clear how the government pronouncement on completion of the remaining periods to round off a class would impact the system and the children. It was reported that the Information Commissioner had stated that one month would be used to round off the remaining term to reopen for a fresh term and another one month used to round off another term in the new school year in order to catch up and return the system as it was.
If this is true as stated some questions become necessary. Is one month sufficient to cover an academic work of three months? It is doubtful except it is compressed. If we must do all that does it not amount to overloading the pupils and violating the requirements for good educational training. These are questions the experts in this area need to sort out comprehensively in order to revert to status quo.
It is not in doubt that so much pressure would be thrown on the teachers and pupils in the event of any attempt to overload them. Then the big question again as we prepared to mitigate the consequences of such outcomes.
Edge Express wishes to call on the educational authorities and the government to use this opportunity to pay close attention to our educational system which many have described as being in the sorry state leading parents to abandon public schools. We should recognize that most of those holding the reins of power today are products of public schools and should do so well to reinvigorate it. While the government is regulating the private schools it should ensure as well that its public schools are top-notch.


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