By Ndey Sowe
A group of teachers have called for support to sustain their online “Whatsapp” teaching classes for students amid the Coronavirus pandemic. According to these teachers, the objective of the online “Whatsapp” teaching classes is to teach as usual and assist students at home. This disclosure came when some teachers worked into Foroyaa office on Thursday 4th June 2020, to seek support from relevant stakeholders, the private sector, individuals, Companies and others to sponsor them.
Alieu Ceesay, one of the teachers said they created the group to help students continue their lessons online whilst they stay at home during the Coronavirus pandemic.
He highlighted the reasons behind the initiative and said when Covid-19 started, they initiated this call as Gambians, to do their part in containing the spread of the virus.
“We initiated this to make sure that students stay at home and learn from the group that we created,” he said; that the Ministry of Basic and Secondary School heard about what they are doing and they appreciate it; that MoBSE called on them for a discussion and MoBSE approved the course they give to students; that they were told to continue and promised support.
He remarked: “We do not only wait for MoBSE to support because we need the society, individuals, Companies and anyone who can also support us. We are using their own monies to buy credit and we engage in more than ten ‘‘Whatsapp’’ groups which requires a lot of credit.
“I do not think we can be able to sustain what we start because of financial issues,” he lamented and urged the public to know that the “Whatsapp” lessons are approved by MoBSE; that what they are doing is not a joke as some might think; that most students are learning very well from it.
Alasana Jallow, another teacher said the emergence of Covid-19 deserves and requires a holistic approach and collective effort to repel the pandemic from the surface of the earth.
“The pandemic should not confined us to one place and make us not to function as before,” he said; that they are teachers and students of the University of the Gambia at the same time; that they came together to initiate this virtual teaching and learning for those under-privileged students at home.
“We are helping students across the country. We teach from Monday to Saturday and from 8am to 11pm. We are doing this not for our benefit but for the nation. It is high time we work together to curb the spread of the virus,’’ he said.
Jallow urged for moral support from all stakeholders and appealed to students to be serious about online classes and join the program.
Kaddy K. Sillah, a teacher, expressed gratitude to be part of the initiative; that as concerned teachers, they decided to make the platform for students to continue learning after School even after the end of the Coronavirus pandemic.
Abubacarr A.N. Darboe also called on other teachers to come forward and support them especially for senior level students.