Today is designated as World Teachers’ Day! Today is also the day that due to increased COVID19 cases in New York, schools are about to close in 19 zip codes across Brooklyn. Today as well, Jamaican teachers and students return to school on virtual google platforms.
Schools are the most vulnerable places when it comes to the spread of COVID19. Governments across the world take care in managing return to school activities. A crowded classroom exposes everyone to COVID19, including the teachers. The decision by the Ministry of Education to reopen school virtually is a good one. Though after seven months of little or no classroom learning, many students will require special attention.
Kudos to the teachers, they have been preparing for a return to virtual school. They turned out in droves for workshops offered by the MOEYI, JTA; And recently several Jamaica Diaspora Taskforces collaborated to offer Gooogle refresh sessions. It was welcoming to see thousands of teachers across the island join these Diaspora sessions. It’s a testament to the love teachers have for their profession and the children they teach and their commitment to being ready today on October 5, 2020, the first day schools return to session. It’s also very heartfelt to see so many individuals, Alumni groups, and Church groups responding to the needs of tablets and laptops across Jamaican schools; That need is still great.
Today on World Teachers’ Day, we should take some time out to think about our teachers. It’s been a rough road back to the classroom. Some teachers may be ready, but the ones who are uncertain, Google refreshed or not, will still show up for their students today.
There is a lot to learn on both sides of the coin; A new normal for both learners and teachers but a productive one. Before COVID19, technology was not an essential priority. Today we have to storm our way into the future together, not one student or school or teacher at a time, everyone must yield.
We have dealt with the rigors of COVID19, but like most things in life, with the rigors, there are also benefits. Now it’s time to allow the benefits into our lives as well.
Happy World Teachers’ Day everyone!