The Department of Education and schools completed their Covid-19 Response Plan in 2021 last year. The plan detailed the preparations and requirements for schools in alignment with the Covid-19 National Alert Code Levels.
BCN news reached out to Director of Education Birtha Tongahai via email last week regarding the school’s plans and preparations in the event of covid-19 national alert code red.
Mrs. Tongahai responded saying “the Schools Principals and Teachers have prepared Lessons and Study Plans for Students in the event that the possible lockdown may be extended indefinitely.”
“Due to lack of stable internet connectivity in many areas, the Schools will not go all out offering Online learning but they are prepared to deliver lesson packs to students at their homes or a designated place through the Village Council channels. It is also planned to seek permission to BCN for a dedicated spot on radio for teachers to deliver some lessons via radio”, says Mrs. Tongahai.
BCN news also reached out to a few parents to ask if they are aware about the Department of Education Covid-19 Response Plan for the schools.
A parent of six children with four children in high school and two in primary school told BCN news, “my kids, particularly the older ones attending Niue High School, seem to be well aware of the plans in regards to their school work. They’ve talked about how the teachers have told them that the school is working on a covid plan should the country go into lockdown. On the other hand, the more specific one in regards to their classes. Some subject teachers have told them that online classes and tutorials will be through messenger. So right now we’re in the process of trying to set them up with messenger accounts in preparation for this.”
“As for the primary school ones. I’m happy because every class has a group chat so the teacher informs parents in real time if anything happens or changes or notices in general. I also like that the schools have fb pages and are always updated with new information”, says the parent of six.
Another parent responded and said they are not fully aware of the school’s Covid-19 Response plan saying, “No not really what the school has planned but I’m not waiting. I’ve signed up my two for online study ladder with the schools and made sure our tv and internet at home are set up. Tv in case school delivers classes on tv and internet for online study ladders.”
Director of Education Birtha Tongahai says that the department would need to go over the 2021 plan once again to “amend accordingly to suit the changing environment as Department Plans must align to the main National Emergency Response Plan”.