‘Home-based learning not practical, applicable to all’

Marcus Hugo

MIRI: The suggestion by the Education Ministry for schools to implement home-based learning until the Covid-19 pandemic in the country is easier said than done, says a former school principal Marcus Hugo.

He said the suggestion may not be practical and applicable to all schools, especially those in rural and
sub-urban areas, due to telecommunication and internet connectivity issues.

“(And) what about the issue of students who do not have smartphones or computers, as acknowledged by the study carried out by the ministry recently?

“With such background and challenge, this would really put our rural students in a disadvantaged
position in their learning and could result in a wider gap between the haves and have-nots,” he said when contacted yesterday.

Marcus, who taught for 32 years including at schools in rural Baram, said while online and home-based learning can be carried out in towns and cities without much problem, the Education Ministry has to come up with alternatives for students in rural areas.

“For rural schools, one way may be for the teachers to prepare printed learning or teaching worksheets based on their lesson plans for their students.

“Other than that, the education department can also identify a few centres as the focal point for nearby villages, where perhaps a group of maybe 10 students can gather once every fortnight with their teachers.”

He said such method could prove more practical for rural students and would ensure they are not deprived of their right to education during the Movement Control Order (MCO) period.

Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin on April 10 had instructed the Education Ministry to implement home-based learning initiatives throughout the MCO.

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Source: https://www.theborneopost.com/2020/04/23/home-based-learning-not-practical-applicable-to-all/