Government has ordered teachers at boarding schools to conduct face-to-face lessons with Covid-19 positive students amid a fierce surge in new infections among learners countrywide.
Primary and Secondary Education ministry director of communications and advocacy Taungana Ndoro said Monday this was an attempt to ensure affected students, especially those set to sit for national examinations, do not fall far behind in terms of their education.
“All learners have not stopped attending lessons, even those who are not in isolation. We have a system where the teachers in full protective gear go to sick bays to conduct with the learners,” Ndoro said.
“Remember this is not the first time we have had outbreaks in schools, we had children who wrote their examinations from isolation centres last year; so, we have employed the same strategy so that our learners do not continue losing more time.”
Grade 7 examinations are due to start end of November while both Ordinary Level and Advanced Level start writing Mid-December right into 2022.
The decision to compel teachers to conduct lessons with sick students is likely going to anger teachers’ unions who have been gripping with authorities for unilaterally opening schools without adequate preparation to prevent the continued spread of the disease among learners.
There have been concerns over the mixing of day and boarding students as the education sector grapples with the scourge.
Ndoro said the ministry has resolved to separate day school learners and boarders.
Said the ministry official, “To safeguard our increasing number of cases, we have separated our day learners from the boarders so that we can better manage their interaction. We are not discriminating, but this is a way of mitigating against more infections.”
By last Thursday, 450 students had reportedly tested positive to Covid-19 since schools opening three weeks ago.