The reopening of the 2021/2022 Academic Year has been delayed, due to the current COVID-19 situation in Dominica.
Education Minister, Octavia Alfred who made the announcement Tuesday afternoon said, “The Ministry of Education understands the anxiety of our parents and students and we have spent the better part of the last three weeks in planning for the reopening of school.”
From September 1 to 10, 2021, teachers will be engaged in training and planning. Parents and the general public will also be involved.
Learning will commence online for Form Five students only from September 13 to October 1, 2021
“Based on a survey carried out by the Ministry of Education, all students moving from [Form] Four to Five have devices and also have their textbooks,” Alfred said.
The number of students without access to the internet at home are low and the Minister assured that provisions will be made for them to be accommodated to their village primary schools “taking into consideration the necessary protocols”.
Teachers on the other hand will work from their respective schools as all secondary schools have internet access and devices for their use.
The formalized online learning structured timetables are as follows; classes will run from 8 am to 2 pm with six 45-minute sessions, two 15- minute eye and brain breaks, and one 20 minutes snack break.
“Students are expected to be dressed in uniform while attending class even if they are at home. Classes will be monitored by education officers, principles, and lead teachers,” Alfred said.
Students from Form 1 to 4 and primary school students will begin classes on October 4, 2021.
Mrs. Alfred said while the Ministry of Education is in the process of finalizing the mode of instruction for these students, it most likely will be a hybrid approach.
She added that at present thirty-seven percent of teachers are vaccinated and encouraged teachers “to get vaccinated for their protection and the protection of the students”.
Meantime, the Minister revealed that soon vaccinations will be available to individuals age 14 to 17 and encouraged parents with children within that age group to get their children vaccinated.