We are living in what our generation can consider as surviving one of the greatest threats in our lifetime – the Corona Virus Pandemic. The worldwide devastating impact of the pandemic, especially in education, leaves us all anxious about what the world will be like once the crisis is over.
Can we still go back and do things we normally do? Can we still socialize like the old days? Is it finally time to leave everything behind and start over with what we now call as the “new normal?”
This is the 2nd part of the impact of the pandemic in education and the important issues to focus on:
Children, especially the youth, may find it challenging staying at home for a few months due to the pandemic. This is because they give priority to peer connections during their teenage years.
Not being able to socialize with friends can pose significant challenges to their well-being. Similarly, anxiety could arise in older children and adolescents as they try to understand the impact of the pandemic on them and their future.
This is one of the serious issues to focus on since the effects of isolation due to the pandemic is not a matter to be taken lightly.
Furthermore, a long period of isolation may increase dropout rates. We should remember that school is not a place for academic development alone. It is also a place for the development of social skills and interactions between peers. For this reason, staying connected is of the utmost importance by any means necessary.
An adjustable plan is needed because the information about the pandemic changes. The plan to reopen schools, for example, could be gradual to prevent the possibility of a second wave. Alternative measures such as reduced hours or staggered lessons could also be considered.
Public health officials must have plans to help and assist the children and their families. The children may need support in this area as they try to return to normal life. This is particularly of essence to those who lost their loved ones in the fight against the pandemic. They need help coping and connecting as they start over and face the world once again.
As education systems try to address this crisis, they also need to think about how to recover. Also, they have to provide a stronger stand against the impact of the pandemic. After all that has happened, the educational sector should have a better understanding of the need to avoid or even alleviate the widening inequality gap in education.
The impact of the pandemic in education is truly an eye-opener for the education sector. It is for them seriously consider the importance of building resilience to resolve different challenges from pandemic disease to climate change, and even technological advancements.
It is also a way to educate us on the skills that students need to enhance in this uncertain world. These include capable decision-making, creative problem solving, and possibly, adaptation. The skills mentioned are needed by students as they go through the new normal routines. These routines are quite different from the things they used to do pre-pandemic.
This is an opportunity for us to refocus our attention. We must make sure that every child and every family has the educational and social resources to survive this unexpected global event, to recover from pain and suffering, and to succeed further in the future.