Uncertainty over alternative teaching methods in Sudurpaschim Province


With COVID-19 still largely affecting public life, districts, including Kailali in Sudurpaschim Province, are uncertain about the alternative method to be adopted for the resumption of teaching-learning activities.

The categorisation and registration of students’ names have been going on in line with the School Teaching Facilitation Guideline. But indecision on how classes will resume has further confused the school administration, teachers and guardians.

Some schools have, however, begun physical classes by maintaining social distancing and adopting safety measures.

Principal at Kailali Vidya Niketan in Dhangadi Topendra Shah said, “A guardian from Bajhang district requested the schools to teach his children by visiting his own district. As the schools have to depend largely on guardians regarding methods of teaching, it takes time to finalise the proper alternative method.” He added that many guardians and teachers suggested that classes should be resumed.

The local levels had issued circulars to schools here to implement the Teaching Guideline and the schools are also for resuming classes.

Similarly, TN Joshi, a lecturer, informed that at a time when some local levels had not fully lifted the prohibitory order to contain the spread of coronavirus, the local level’s direction on resumption of teaching-learning has added to the uncertainty.

“Which method of alternative teaching-learning is to be adopted? Who is there to own responsibility if anyone — student or teacher — gets infected? These are serious issues indeed,” said Joshi.

Debate on resuming teaching students by reaching their settlements or by adopting online platforms is going on. Virtual class is not only costly but also impractical because many students do not have internet access.

In such a situation, the number of students attending classes could be less well-managed and teaching would have to be in shifts.

A school student Ramesh Ojha observed, “Students are happy to hear the news that teaching-learning will resume after such a long gap.

But, as coronavirus is not contained yet, there is still fear of infection.”

Section Officer at Education Section of Dhangadi sub-metropolis Office Mahadev Joshi said in the present situation, running schools in different shifts would be a good option.

“Maintaining social distancing and adopting safety measures is a must,” he said.

A version of this article appears in e-paper on September 28, 2020, of The Himalayan Times.