BVI News

Challenges for ministry finding balanced learning system for preschoolers during COVID crisis

Chief Education Officer Connie George has said the Ministry of Education is experiencing challenges in finding a well-balanced system of learning for preschoolers ahead of the new school year.

George gave that indication while responding to questions about the reopening of schools during a live public forum this week.

She said: “I was speaking with one of my early childhood principals and I was saying this is the area that is really giving us a lot of struggles to identify the best way to deal with them because they are so small and the whole engagement with online and keeping them steady and everything like that is posing some challenges.”

Encouraging use of packages

George also said she is hoping for the resumption of face-to-face teaching, at least for preschool students.

Until it is safe to do so, the Chief Education Officer said she believes sending the preschoolers weekly packages of educational material — along with the guidance of the parents — will have to suffice. Parents would assist by engaging with the material with their child or children.

“One of the key things that we have been promoting and encouraging them to do is to go the route of the packages, go the route of videos and sharing the videos so that they can sit and watch because you know they learn a lot in that way,” George stated.

Appeal to employers to be understanding

In the meantime, Education Minister Dr Natalio Wheatley appealed to business owners to be considerate with their employees who have school-aged children.

“We really need our employers – the business community – to be able to be understanding in this particular period so persons who have small children to be able to make flexible working arrangements for them,” he stated.

“We know it is more difficult for some jobs than others but we just have to try our best to try to work with parents with small children to ensure that they are able to give the support to that particular group as much as possible,” Dr Wheatley added.

All public schools are scheduled to officially commence the 2020/2021 academic year from September 21.

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  1. bottom line says:

    They dont know what they are doing

    Like 2
    Dislike 3
  2. A disgrace says:

    This pandemic started to affect us from February/March. Some 6 months ago. You cannot be telling us parents that after all this time, during all the lockdowns and curfews and you do not have a plan for kindergarten child to learn. I cannot accept that. I’m sorry. I applaud the teachers for their efforts. This is not the fault of teachers. This is poor leadership. So what are these kids to do for the rest of the year? I lwatched the press conference a few nights ago and when the question was asked about the kindergarten students, Minister Wheatley quickly shuffled the question to Mrs. George which told me right away what he himself never ever thought about it…
    So if there are no plans for kindergarten, then
    What are the plans for specials needs children?
    What are the plans for children who learn differently?
    What are the plans for students who need counseling?

    We continue to play with the future of our children.

    Like 12
    Dislike 2
  3. SAT says:

    This government has no plans for anything. Their only plan is keep locking down the country and hoping that covid disappears. They have killed the local economy of the country with lack of leadership and management of the situation.

    Like 4
    Dislike 2
  4. Look says:

    People losing jobs and salaries because they don’t have no one to send their children by and they can’t leave them home by themselves. This situation will get worse if parents can’t work to support the household. Open the preschools, it is not everyone has luck to have big children at home to babysit the young ones and even if you have big children they have online school too. This is ridiculous man.

  5. And says:

    Its a challange for parents who are not working since borders closure to pay for school supplies and vides. Why cant the government pay this year? Where will we get the money from?? Tell SSB to process our package and at least the kids will get to eat a full meal. Everyone working except those in the tourism industry so where do we have to go to pick up the money to paid for the stuff?

  6. Yawn says:

    Everybody want Daycare because they can’t handle their children while balancing work but if anything happens to that child they will not take it lightly. I’ve seen parents go crazy on teachers and students when their child gets hit from another child. Parents were acting overly aggressive when there was the hand, foot and mouth outbreak in daycares in the BVI last year. Imagine how they would react if their child gets Covid while at the daycare. They won’t just say it’s ok. Some will try to sue the Daycare, Government and the ghetto parents will try to assault teachers as they do when something happens to their child.

    • @yawn says:

      Have the parents sign a disclaimer. If their child got sick at daycare they couldn’t sue the facility or the government unless they could show that they were negligent. Given the current climate and the medical fact that children barely show any symptoms and the virus is not fatal to them allowing daycares to open would not be negligent. They could try – but they would just end up losing a heap of money. Open the daycares – sending your child to daycare is a choice – let parents make that choice. All the people talking about… can you imagine if a child caught it … they are just making excuses. And as for the daycare owner who said packages and videos work?!?! I have a 2 year old and a 1 year old. They do NOT work. Open the daycares.

  7. kan says:

    How can the government pay for pre schools that is the parent or parends responsibility stop being so greedy and irresponsible if the covid did not come they would be paying

  8. Private school says:

    I thought by putting my chils into private school would have been better BUT! Come on we are paying tuition. You know online schooling would require internet UPGRADE! Every minute the tracher sorry, she sorry, she sorry meanwhile the school expects FULL FEES for terrible service to the children.

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