Since there are currently no Covid-19 cases and no community spread of the virus in Dominica all schools will reopen as normal for teachers on Tuesday, September 1st 2020 and students on Monday 7th September 2020.
Education Minister Octavia Alfred made that announcement during the “Education in Action” programme on DBS Radio earlier today.
The third term of the 2019-2020 academic school year was fully conducted online due to COVID-19.
Alfred said the decision was taken subject to adequate consideration by the Ministry of Health, Wellness and New Health Investment and also having taken everything else into account.
The minister said that on September 1, staff will be engaged in final preparations to receive students.
“Teachers will be engaged in professional staff development training and planning,” she stated.
During September the 1st to the 4th, a lot of cleaning and rearranging of furniture will be done to ensure that everything is in place, the minister added.
“In some places, we will have to install some more water troughs and extra hand-washing stations to make sure those things that are necessary are in place,” she said.
According to Alfred, this school year, planning is even more essential than before, since teachers and their department heads must review the curriculum and prepare for pre-testing activities which, she said, will be crucial this year.
“These pre-testing activities will guide our remedial programme or programmes which will be necessary before moving ahead,” the minister explained.
She said schools will also have to engage in what is referred to as call curriculum mapping to ensure that students have all the knowledge that is required to move forward.
She believes this is necessary because some of the students due to limitations with online learning and lack of supervision by parents, missed out on some of the instructions in the third term and second term.
Alfred said her ministry has a plan in place that will be activated at the national level as it relates to Covid-19 changes.
She said ICT experience will also be utilized.
“We need to understand that ICT was always there; it might just become a little more popular,” she remarked. “So, teaching and learning will be done face-to-face and we will include the use of ICT as usual or a little more.”