Deadly COVID-19 has shaken the world for the past four months which Ghana was not spared.
In the process of fighting this pandemic, His Excellency Nana Addo Dankwah gave some directives which included the closure of all schools on 16th March 2020, and schools have remained closed to date.
There is now a consultation ongoing as to how the school environment can be made safe for students to go back to school to continue their academic works without contracting the deadly virus.
Here are 7 suggestions to be considered before considering the re-opening of Basic schools.
1. Urgent need to go back to the Shift System
Classes must be resized to at most 30 students in a class. This is to enable teachers and students to practice social distancing because most schools especially public schools have between 60-120 students in a class.
2. More teachers need to be employed to meet the shift system mentioned above.
3. Adequate PPE must be provided to teachers and students to enable them to protect themselves from contracting the virus in order not to make schools a hotspot area.
4. Projectors should be made available to all schools to reduce talking and ensure a better and easy understanding of lessons. (Favourable alternatives should be considered for schools in areas without electricity).
5. Hand washing must be intensified in schools. Even though most schools are already practicing handwashing, we MUST ensure there are enough veronica buckets, other hand washing items, and alcohol-based sanitizers in every school.
6. There should be no social gathering like morning assembly and worship in the school. If it would be practiced, it must be done at the class level.
7. There should be no external break and games like football, netball etc which would bring the children together.
In all, only final year students should be allowed to resume first as a pilot to see how feasible the blueprints would be.
Writer: Nana Yaa Frantomapa
(A Professional Teacher)