By Ousman A Marong
School parents within the satelite villages of Essau, Mayamba, Kanuma and Mbolett Ba are calling on the Ministry of Basic and Secondary Education (MoBSE) to respect their views with regard to the reopening of schools during COVID-19 Pandemic.
“I welcome the reopening of schools because the children have not been to school for six months due to the pandemic. MoBSE must listen to us in ensuring safety learning mechanism to our kids in this COVID-19 crisis,” said Yankuba Marong, a concern parent and also a member of Essau Lower Basic School subcommittee.
According to him, both the Ministry of Health and Education should jointly engage the parents to sound their opinion on the reopening of schools for a proper and conducive learning environment in order to prevent students from contracting the virus.
“My suggestion is that the Senior Secondary schools of Grade 10 and 11 should have their lessons on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday while the Grade 12s to have their lessons on Thursday, Friday and Saturday respectively. The same could be applicable to the Junior Secondary,” he remarked.
He added that the Lower Basic Schools ranging from Grade 1 to 3 can have their lessons from Monday to Wednesday while the grade 4 to 6 can have their lessons from Thursday to Saturday.
“ECD/nursery schools can divide level (year) to lessons from Monday to Friday because of their age. This would enable the tertiary institutions to be able to practice and observe the social distance. If this is applicable, contracting the virus will be minimal as at least thirty students can be in class while learning will be in progress until such a time that the authorities would have a solution to the pandemic,” he noted.
On her part, Ms. Mariama Jeng, a school parent asked if the ministry is to provide face masks to the entire school across the country.
“Would they (the ministry) provide face masks to the kids or are they going to leave the burden on us,” Ms. Jeng stated.
She continues: “We should not risk the lives of our kids to go to schools without proper hand washing materials means risking their lives and that of their parents at home.