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General News of Thursday, 11 June 2020


School reopening: Parents must be alert, vocal in this period - Anis Haffar

Ghanaian educationist, Anis Haffar play videoGhanaian educationist, Anis Haffar

For the first time since March 16, 2020, some students will be making a return to their classrooms in a move which represents a major stride in Ghana’s COVID-19 fight and also serve a trial phase of how education in the country will be handled in the coming years.

As part of efforts by government to curb a possible outbreak of the Coronavirus in schools, the education ministry led by Dr. Matthew Opoku Pempeh announced that parents will not be allowed to visit their children when school resumes for final year students.

In this regard, a renowned Ghanaian educationist and founder of the GATE institute, Anis Haffar has proffered an expert opinion about how the safety of final year students can be guaranteed amidst the coronavirus scare.

According to Mr Haffar, parents and guardians in this unusual period should at all times not leave the safety of their children in the hands of only government when they return to school.

He believes the time is ripe for parents and guardians to come together and be vocal about the safety of their children as they resume school from June 22, 2020.

Speaking in an exclusive interview with GhanaWeb, he advised that, “Parents now have to be very alert in terms of conditions in which they dump their kids. In other words, are the places clean…and parents must begin to be vocal about this they need to form pressure groups, PTAs are very important but then we’ve been so aloof…we can’t just depend on one or two people, it has to be a national effort. That’s why I say we’re at the reflection point where people need to be alert for the protection of their own children".

In an attempt to demystify the Education Ministry’s directive of restricting visitation of parents and guardians in schools during this period, Mr Haffar said the minister’s message may have been misinterpreted.

Per his expert opinion, though the directive is quite laudable given the current situation, the import was not to outrightly ban parents from visiting their children, but rather enhance their safety once they begin their school activities.

Mr Haffar explained, “I don’t think anyone will ever say parents can never see their children, maybe that’s a misunderstanding, it’s impossible. But what they mean is that things have to organized, that we can’t just run in and out. We need to follow some protocols.

The education ministry announced that the move is to ensure that children who are being protected in the various Senior High Schools from the COVID-19 are not allowed to come into contact with parents who may have contracted the virus.

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