As primary and secondary school students up till Year 11 return to school tomorrow, the Ministry of Education is stressing that many families will be facing hardship due to the prevailing economic situation and therefore heads of schools and teachers are to be extra vigilant and conscious of students mental and physical health and well being.
In a message to all heads of schools, the Acting Permanent Secretary for Education Susan Kiran says a number of students will take time to readjust and should not be penalised for slow progress in learning.
Kiran says positive reinforcement and motivation should be practiced at all times.
She also says teachers should create a safe space that will encourage students to openly discuss any issues the child may be facing at home.
Kiran says heads of schools, senior teachers and counsellors must render psychological and emotional support to children who would be facing difficulties easing into classroom-based learning.
The Acting Permanent Secretary says students who may have lost their textbooks, exercise books, stationary and uniforms during the extended break must not be humiliated, but dealt with in a sensitive and practical manner.
She has also made it clear that heads of schools should assist teachers to focus on the student and not make unnecessary demands on their time.
Kiran says teachers should not be pressured to report on anything outside their key performance indicators.
She also says staff meetings should be limited to discussing only pertinent issues.
Kiran says all worksheets and any other resource disseminated through online platforms during the extended closure are not to be used as a basis for assessment when students return to school.
She adds these were supplementary resources to keep students occupied during the extended break only.
Year 12 and 13 students started classes last Tuesday while the rest of the classes including early childhood, special inclusive education and vocational schools start tomorrow.
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