Catholic-run schools embrace 'new normal'

Many of the Catholic-run schools have embraced the ‘new normal’ with a change in how classes will be conducted.

With the existence of COVID-19, precautionary measures implemented include strict gate control, temperature check and hand sanitising.  

Don Bosco Technological Institute, Boroko, has commenced classes with a new timetable of three shifts. The last shift is the 6pm to 9pm workshop classes for residents of the Mary Our Help hostel and the St Francis de Sales Residence.

These students have not left the campus during the lockdown period. The staff have extra hours, and have joyfully put in their services for the sake of the students, while the students are happy to organise their program together.

The reduction of contact periods is balanced by the distribution of learning materials and assessments to be done during the contact period through Moodle.

The students have returned to class and are determined to make the most of the year ahead and complete all unfinished work, lest they do not graduate at the end of the year.

Once classes are over, the students are accompanied to the gate by the lecturer as no one is permitted to hang around in the campus.

There were also a few students who said they received little help and support from family and friends while they were at home.

“Spending five weeks at home during the lockdown due to the pandemic has made me reflect deeply on myself and my life. As a final year student and away from the DBTI school campus, I realised the importance of hands-on education and learning at a technical institute,” said fourth year student Regina Wayi.”

“It has taught me that education is a privilege and that I need to invest my time wisely and productively while I have the opportunity to do so.

“Gaining knowledge and insight has to benefit me and in turn it has to have a positive impact on the lives of others. Evaluating my priorities in life, making improvements and withdrawing from habits that may be harmful were a few things I would often contemplate on.

“Another thing I pondered upon was the value of life as nothing in this world can function without it. Knowing that life is short and that every person will die at one point in their lives has enabled me to consider what really matters most in life and that is: God, health, people (family, associates and others) and the environment. Thus, wealth, possessions and fame are the least. The time we are going through is not easy and I hope that we as students will realise that we need to go beyond the issues we face each day to mould ourselves into persons for the future.”

The State of Emergency, with its lockdown, isolation and ‘stay home’ messages have been re-echoed over the past five weeks. Messages of hygiene and maintaining a safe distance have been reinforced on a constant basis.

Sanitisers and disinfectants are provided to each lecturer and class instructor.

(Regina Wayi getting her hands sanitised)

Press release