Education Minister, Nyan Gadsby-Dolly wants parents to understand that schools are allowed to create an individual school plan, even though the ministry has released certain guidelines.
As secondary schools across the country physically reopen today for students in Forms Four, Five and Six, some parents have been up in arms with the mandate by some school principals to have classes run for the full day as opposed to the limited physical classes that was proffered by the MOE.
However, in an interview with GML, Gadsby-Dolly urged parents “to be very careful about surmising that a Principal is “going against” the MOE’s guidelines.”
She said “Schools are distinguished by the numbers of students, the size of the plant, the success of the students in the online environment, the school’s environment, parents’ involvement, school location, school culture etc. All schools are not the same. It is for this reason that the guidelines allow for schools to create an individual school plan which allows schools a measure of individuality in the planning process.”
“For some schools, a serious issue may be allowing students to leave school early, as they may need to prevent students from loitering. For others, parents may generally arrange pick-up, which greatly reduces that problem. For some schools, the teachers and students may also have adapted very well online, and they may have been able to progress significantly with SBAs which are required for most subjects. Others may not have had this general success and may need to ensure at this time that these students complete their requirements to give them the best chance of success. Therefore, each situation is different and requires unique handling.”
Gadsby-Dolly told the media house that School Principals are required to submit individual school plans to Supervisors and added that a report on this is scheduled to come to her this week “so that schools whose operations require a closer look can be identified and intervention made if and when necessary.”