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Sukhalu seeks collective effort to mitigate pandemic’s effect on education

K T Sukhalu

DIMAPUR, JUNE 2: Admitting that the shift to online teaching forced by the COVID pandemic came with “no preparation and little infrastructure”, the Advisor for School Education K Tokugha Sukhalu has appealed to all stakeholders to work together to contain the long-term effects of the pandemic on the education system.

“For the education system, these two years have been especially disruptive to routine and conventional methods of learning. We have had to shift online and to new teaching methods with no preparation and little infrastructure because our existing systems were oriented towards in-person classroom teaching. I realise that many are still struggling with the conversion and that it has been an unequal one in terms of network connectivity and access to the new tools of education. The Government and this Department are committed to ensuring that our education systems are as equitable or more than before the start of the pandemic”, he said in a message issued on Wednesday.
The Advisor thanked the IT&C Department for its efforts to augment data connectivity and access in the State.
For the teachers and students who are facing the brunt of this change, he urged them not to be discouraged. “These are extraordinary times and we are in the midst of a global pandemic that has shaken our systems and society itself to the core; we must choose to rise to this challenge. Given the circumstances of this unexpected transition, I must commend the teachers, students and their parents for adapting as well as they have. However, there is much more that can be done”, he said.
According to Sukhalu, even though the Department has prepared lessons for all students, it is aware that not all have access to smart phones or computers. Therefore, directions have been given to teachers to stay in station to download these lessons and distribute to the students to ensure that none are left out, he said.
“Provisions have been made to enable the teachers and schools to provide these to the students, all teachers should stay in station and do your best to ensure that our students’ education is not compromised. If you are facing difficulty in accessing the lessons or in disseminating it to your students, please inform the Department so your issues can be addressed without delay”, he said.
The Advisor urged students to understand that the Department is doing its best in the current conditions to ensure that their education can continue “with a degree of normalcy and uniformity”.
“These months or years of self-application in your education may perhaps equip you with tools that will help you in your future”, he said.

To parents, Sukhalu maintained that much of the responsibility of ensuring the child’s education in this pandemic lay on their shoulders. “I would urge you to continue to put in the extra effort till such time that we are able to resume classroom lessons again”, he said.
The Advisor also thanked the frontline workers for their tireless work and dedication “to our collective safety”, and offered sympathies to those who have lost their loved ones.
(Page News Service)