Last week, the first confirmed case of COVID-19 (commonly called the coronavirus) was recorded in Nigeria.
As a school leader, the most important thing to do is to ensure that the usual best practices for personal hygiene are followed strictly in your school. These include ensuring that all members of the school community wash their hands regularly and also cover their mouth when coughing or sneezing. Also pay extra attention to doorknobs, keyboards and other surfaces that students touch through the day.
We saw the strongest impact of the outbreak in the education and aviation sector in China and the rest of the world. Schools had to close or come up with creative ways to ensure that teaching and learning continues. Here are some lessons we learnt from how the schools in China and the rest of the world are dealing with the coronavirus outbreak.
A school in the US was forced to shut down because there was a rumour that one of the staff is suspected to have made contact with someone infected by the virus. It turned out to be a piece of false information; however, so many parents had already withdrawn their children.
Action Plan: Communicate every time. Excess information is better than insufficient information. If someone is sick, communicate early.
Information is not ‘informedness‘
Although the news on the coronavirus seems to have gone viral, very few people actually know key facts about the disease, how it is spread and how to deal with it. Educate every member of the school community.
Action Plan: Organise a school community meeting to educate everyone on the virus outbreak
The digital-ready schools win
The schools that thrive combine online educational materials and opportunities for interaction online with traditional place-based classroom methods.
Hong Kong entrepreneur Ben Chu, 42, has a nine-year-old daughter studying at an international elementary school that’s using education app Seesaw and Google Classroom to assign tasks, share materials and collect homework. While speaking with Business Mirror, Chu mentioned that “Learning online is a reasonable compromise at this special time, But it will never be a replacement for a classroom, for face-to-face learning experiences.”
Gradely is organising a webinar (online seminar) for school owners and teachers in Nigeria on How to Contain Disease Outbreaks in Schools. We will discuss prevention & management strategies as well as free tools to use during school closure.
PS. Gradely helps schools in Nigeria create a personalised learning experience for their students. We do this by helping schools digitise their homework and providing insight into how students are performing. Invite us to your school
Co-founder & Head of Growth of Nigeria's first adaptive learning platform - Gradely.NG Oluwaseyi Adelaju is an entrepreneur focussed on opportunities where technology has the potential to transform education. Seyi holds a masters degree in School Media from the University of Ibadan, Nigeria.
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