From Francis Nansak, Lafia
Following the closure of schools to guard against the spread of the dreaded COVID-19, some private schools in Lafia, Nasarawa State, have adopted e-learning platforms to engage students away from school.
In a chat with The AUTHORITY on Friday in Lafia, proprietors of the schools said the move would ensure that students will not get involved in social vices as a result of idleness.
They explained that the e-learning platforms cover teaching, assignment, examination and marking of scripts, with no cost to parents and guardians.
They, however, said the new system affects the finances of schools as teachers are involved in the process to ensure its success.
Speaking on the development,
Mrs Ima Abasi-Brown, Proprietress of You-Nik Secondary and Primary School Lafia, said “we adopted e-learning because we understand the danger, when a child is disconnected from academic activities for a long time.”
She said with the system, lessons are delivered and assignments are being sent to the students through the e-learning platform.
Mrs Abasi-Brown listed the e-learning applications being used in the school to include Google Classroom and Zoom.
“With the google classroom room, we send them activities, get back the activities, mark and send them back to the children.
“The Zoom application on the other hand has video conference-call where they get to see their teachers write as they teach them,” she said.
She said the students and their parents are very excited that their children have started learning something again to keep them engaged.
She, however, said the challenges they are facing include; lack of financial capabilities by parents to buy data and lack of electricity power.
On her part, Mrs Grace Adigizi, Proprietress of Royal Scholar School, Lafia, said the school adopted e-learning in an effort to keep the kids busy.
Mrs Adigizi said the school uses a Zoom application that takes over 200 people at a time, adding that links are often sent to the parents to enable them to join the class.
“We ask the parents what time is convenient for them because some of them are health workers so they still go to work. So , we do it at different times based on the time the parents agree upon.
“The kids are excited to see their teachers and their class pupils even though it is not like the normal classroom situation.
“Also, most parents are not used to the application and not every parent that has the gadget or even the data to access the classes , so it is a little bit challenging,” she said.
Also speaking, the state chairman of National Association of Proprietors of Private Schools (NAPPS), Hon. Boniface Ironunbe, said the idea was a welcome development, which if fully integrated, will keep the education sector running and updated at all times.
Hon. Ironunbe, who doubles as
the Proprietor of Bill Clinton Academy, located in Karu, called on Nasarawa State government to throw its full weight behind e-learning.
His words: “I am not only in support of the idea, but appeal to the state government through the ministry of education in the state to advance the development to a wider scope, that can reach children that can not access the e-learning methods.
” I have started the same in my school and it is helping in keeping the children in touch with their academic activities.
“Let me also further appeal to the government, if they can intervene by granting financial assistance to private schools teachers, since their source of income has been suspended by the lock down.”