By Ireen Kayira
Lilongwe, May 7, Mana: Minister of Education Science and Technology, William Susuwele Banda has revealed that radio and television classes will start in a week’s time as a make-up for students in view of the schools’ shutdown due to the Coronavirus pandemic.
Speaking with Malawi News Agency (MANA) on Tuesday, the minister said he was assured by Malawi College of Distance Education (MCDE) after he paid the institution a visit a week ago, that the classes would start in two weeks’ time.
“I was given two weeks that time and so far, one week has gone and therefore, I expect it to start within a week,” said Banda.
He said the idea to start Television and Radio classes has come to assist those who are not able to access the ministry’s website for online classes.
“Our goal is to make sure that every child is able to learn during this period of Covid-19 using different means,” the minister said.
Currently, there are classes whereby students learn online using the ministry’s website.
This idea came in after the State President, Arthur Peter Mutharika announced a state-of-disaster and that all schools should be closed due to the Coronavirus.
Susuwele Banda said so far, there has been positive feedback from those that are able to access the ministry’s website for online classes.
“This is giving us confidence on how we are operating as most students are able to embrace it,” he said.
He, therefore, urged those that can access the website to give the opportunity to their children to attend these classes.
“If parents can afford to buy a smart phone for their chid, they should do so because buying a basic smart phone for your child this time of Covid-19 is the same as buying a book for him,” Banda said.
The minister further said online classes will not only be there during the Covid-19 period but even in the aftermath of the pandemic.
One of the parents whose child is benefiting from the online classes, Chimwemwe Phiri, said the idea is beneficial and good during this time the country is going through.
“My child attends these online classes and it has proved to be effective because it is the same as the child going to school to attend classes,” she said.
Phiri added that initiatives the Education Ministry is putting in place are good, saying children are kept busy which would also help them prevent unwanted pregnancies.