Education Minister Janet Museveni has made her third address on the education sector’s preparedness to continue learning during the Covid19 pandemic.
On July 03, Ms Museveni said her Ministry had received sector-specific standard operating procedures (SoPs) from the Ministry of Health (MoH).
It is these SoPs that will “guide us in determining our sector’s readiness to re-open Institutions of Learning,” she added.
“My Ministry shall review these SOPs and advise Cabinet in due course.”
JANET MUSEVENI ADVISES PATIENCE AND RESTRAINT ON SCHOOL REOPENING
The First Lady noted that local and international trends had made go slow on reopening.
President Yoweri Museveni had cancelled an earlier plan to reopen school gates for candidates and finalists after scientists advised against the idea.
“What we are learning from our local trends of Covid19 as well as experiences from countries that had closed but later re-opened Institutions of Learning, is that we need to exercise patience and self-restraint on the matter of normal resumption of Institutions of Learning,” she said.
NO BAN ON ONLINE CLASSES
She also dismissed reports that the Ministry had banned virtual classes.
Parents in some schools like Kampala Parents had complained over exorbitant fees for online lessons.
Also, previously, the Minister chided Uganda Christian University (UCU) for conducting online exams.
But she now says she can’t be the one discouraging e-learning.“There has been a misconception in the media that the Ministry of Education and Sports prohibited e-learning. This is absolutely not true; we cannot be the ones banning what we are promoting,” she said.
“What we are doing as a Sector is to put forward a comprehensive sector-wide agenda to guide delivery of formal Education through e-learning mechanisms because it has implications on quality of education for the country and its citizens.
“Once the ICT and ELearning Framework is complete, we shall communicate it to our stakeholders and the public at large because you all deserve to know.”
But she insisted “no continuing learner should be left behind or excluded from learning when a Learning Institution starts implementing the e-learning approach as a Covid19 response intervention.”
She also revealed all learners in primary and secondary schools will receive printed learning materials. Lessons via the media will also continue.
She appealed to parents and guardians to help learners attend lessons via media.
“The effectiveness of this home-schooling approach we are utilizing is a shared responsibility if our learners are to get the most out of it,” she said.
“As a parent, take the effort to find out when the lessons are broadcasting on the radio or TV stations, if you are not available for that one hour, have another responsible older sibling or adult in the home be with the child as they listen to the lessons.”
UNIVERSITIES AND OTHER TERTIARY INSTITUTIONS
The First Lady revealed that it was “our desire as a Sector that all Universities and Tertiary Institutions do e-learning as soon as possible.”
The Ministry has already put in Guidelines for implementation of e-learning, she continued, adding that the Executive Director of the National Council for High Education (NCHE) would soon communicate these guidelines.