Are we smelling like sheep yet?
April 21, 2021
Liturgy School goes virtual
April 21, 2021

CEBM: students’ participation remains a challenge with virtual teaching

Ongoing monitoring of students is one of the challenges as education continues in Term III using a “hybrid format”.

Community spread remains unabated, and the Education Ministry announced on April 6 that schools will continue using “the hybrid format” used in Term II of Academic Year 2020/2021. Term III began April 12.

Students of Forms 4-6 will access physical classes only for practical subject components, all other Secondary, Primary and Early Childhood Care and Education students continue using online or package systems.

In the latter, printed material is left for parents to collect and completed assignments returned. Educational material is supplemented by the Ministry via television, radio, print media and online.

Chief Executive Officer of the Catholic Education Board of Management (CEBM) Sharon Mangroo reports that at the Primary level, monitoring and evaluation of students’ output continued as pre-COVID, based on tests aligned to the Secondary Entrance Assessment Examination. Not enough attention is paid to “non-test assessments”.

There are five Government-assisted secondary schools which has CEBM oversight. Mangroo stated at the Secondary level challenges identified were: student punctuality for online classes, getting active participation during classes and not knowing if they were taking notes.

Teachers evaluated students’ performance through coursework assignments such as multiple choice, essays, and projects. “These were used to generate mid-term and end of term reports.”

For the 119 government-assisted primary schools the CEBM has oversight for, the average for students logging on daily for online classes is 50 per cent. This figure should not be taken at face value.

Mangroo explained, that it does not indicate schools whose students come from lower socio-economic backgrounds or are in areas not well served by internet providers for example, Mamoral and La Fillette.

The average of students logging in online daily for the secondary schools averaged 80 per cent. Mangroo pointed out however, that this number was not reflective of whether there was all-day engagement and “logging on does not always correspond to active student engagement”. —LPG