Parents and teachers want face-to-face learning to resume and fight fear of Covid

PETALING JAYA: Parents and teachers agree that children should return to school as soon as possible to ensure that they do not fall behind in their studies.

However, the risk of Covid-19 infection remains a major concern and stakeholders want standard operating procedures (SOPs) to be strengthened, especially in boarding schools.

They said this was essential in reducing the risk of infection in the community.

Parents’ Action Group for Education chairman Datuk Noor Azima Abdul Rahim said the environment has become “more conducive” now for students to return to school to resume face-to-face lessons. .

“It’s possible as long as the Covid SOPs are strictly observed,” she said the sun.

She said boarding school dormitories could be reorganized to provide physical distancing so that all students can return to school.

“That way, it wouldn’t need to be limited to only students taking exams (such as SPM and STPM),” she added.

Schools have been closed for most of the past 22 months, thanks to frequent movement control orders imposed to curb the spread of Covid-19.

Classes resumed in phases from October 3, in accordance with the national Covid-19 recovery plan, but under restrictive conditions.

In non-residential schools, students attended classes on a rotational basis while in boarding schools they had to be tested for Covid-19 before being allowed to enter the premises.

However, the year-end vacation has started with the new school year scheduled to start on January 3.

Although he agreed that it would be ideal if the face-to-face classes resumed, the Chairman of the Advisory Council of National Parent-Teacher Associations, Datuk, Dr Mohamad Ali Hassan, believes that several key questions should be taken up. into consideration before that happens.

“Many questions remain unanswered. For parents and the public, reporting an outbreak in Sekolah Seri Puteri (in Putrajaya on December 3) is a major concern, ”he said.

He added that one of the issues was whether schools were completely disinfected and prepared for the return of students, the failure of some teachers to get vaccinated and whether elementary school children should be vaccinated.

“These are relevant questions that must be answered satisfactorily, not only to ensure the safety of students and teachers, but also to give parents peace of mind,” he said.

The general secretary of the National Teaching Profession, Wang Heng Suan, agreed that it was necessary for students to return to school for face-to-face lessons.

He urged authorities to get parents and their children tested for Covid-19 before allowing them to return to class.

“We cannot control the parents. They are up every day and sometimes they can carry the virus home and infect their children, ”he said. the sun.

He added that the children could then be carriers of the virus at school.

Parents are reluctant to send their children back to school. While they are worried about their children’s academic progress, they are also worried about the risk of them becoming infected.

Humairah Ahmad Nasir, mother of a 15-year-old teenager, proposed that children be allowed to return to school but for shorter hours each day.

“If the situation worsens, the Ministry of Education could allow only fifth graders to attend classes and classes should focus on the compulsory subjects they need to take for their SPM exams,” a- she declared., adding that the SOP should also be stricter in boarding schools.

“Once they get back to school, they shouldn’t be allowed to go out,” she said.

Another relative, Noraini Mohd Han, said the capacity of hostels should be reduced to avoid overcrowding.

“Junior high school students can continue to learn online, giving senior high school students the space to focus on their studies,” she said.

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