TVET classes online, learning packages also available

DPI, Guyana, Wednesday, June 24, 2020

The Ministry of Education’s Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) department has been reviewing their teaching methods to ensure they can continue to reach their students during the COVID-19 pandemic and after.

Deputy Chief Education Officer (Technical), Patrick Chinedu told DPI that currently, some TVET instructors are conducting their programmes online while some institutions have also designed “learning packages.”

Deputy Chief Education Officer (DCEO), Patrick Chinedu

“The learning packages are distributed to students that unable to access the internet especially those in the hinterland regions and those in the Region 5 riverain communities,” Chinedu disclosed.

He explained that online teaching has formed part of the curriculum in several TVET institutions for the last three years. Therefore, during the pandemic, several teachers continued their programmes via this method.

The DCEO also disclosed that the department has been working to determine how best they can consolidate these methods of teaching, especially in like of the pandemic.

“We have been meeting and discussing various formats to enhance what we are doing. Therefore, going forward we are going to be using a blended method. This means interventions will be implemented to streamline online teaching as well as enhance our preparation for learning packages,” he explained.

Among these interventions is online registration; Chindeu said of May, many of the TVET institutions have moved away from the “face-to-face hard copy application process.”

Additionally, a decision will be taken as to which preferred platform will be used by the institutions to host online programmes. Currently, instructors are using either Zoom or Edmodo.

There is also a plan is to have each TVET institution furnished with their own website by the end of 2020.

Chinedu said to ensure these objectives are met they have already requested full access to the internet for their instructions to enhance their work and several pieces of equipment.

“We have also requested laptops and tablets for teachers as well as projectors and television recorders to assist in the classroom. Whenever school reopens, we will have to implement social distancing, therefore in our classrooms and labs, there will be no more than 10 students while the rest will join the classroom virtually. So, these tools will be necessary.”

The department has also reached out to TVET teacher in secondary schools to ensure they have the necessary equipment and training to use the online platforms.

Finally, Chinedu said the department is currently conducting a survey to ascertain what are some of the concerns facing the students it relates to the online programmes – for example, whether they have any access to the internet, and if they do the stability of the service provided.

This data he noted will inform them as to what interventions will need to be implemented.