The Concerned Parents and Educators Network (CPE) had a meeting held between key school administrators and parents on the 7th of May, 2020. The meeting was held as a means for parents and educators to discuss the problems faced with the children’s education during the current pandemic.
The meeting was moderated by Mrs Yinka Ogunde. In attendance were several school owners of reputable schools around the country, former president of the Association for Formidable Educational Development, Mrs Dada Ifejola, and several parents of high repute.
The meeting began with the school administrators outlining problems faced by the schools under current circumstances. Mrs Adun Akinyemiju listed the remuneration of teachers as a major issue faced. “Usually the cash flow of a school is tied to the income that comes in,” she said. “The cash flow is based on a quarterly income”. This income has been affected by the closure of schools. She also mentioned other problems as uncertainty on the date of resumption, schools’ inability to service existing loans, and a lack of understanding between the schools and the government and members of staff.
Other problems outlined by other administrators include a widening achievement gap between children, a possibility of losing students/pupils, and the issue of proper assessment of the children, among others.
Mrs Dada also outlined some problems faced by low-cost schools. The inability of parents to pay fees has led to a shortage of finances. Children are also unable to connect to possible online classes due to a shortage of devices for this purpose. These, she mentioned, should be a major cause of concern for all.
Parents also had a chance to air their views at the meeting. Mr Akin Semowo called for the parent-teacher relationship to be a partnership. He also called for more dialogue between parents and teachers.
Another parent, Mr Seni Fawenhinmi, complained of a feeling of detachment from the schools and called for more interpersonal communication between the school and parents. He also buttressed on the need for parents to be brought into the decision-making process, citing a lack of such as a hindrance to the implementation of some important decisions.
Some of the solutions come up with by the participants of this meeting were:
- The need for collaboration, and not competition, between schools.
- Communication with Empathy should be employed by schools.
- Schools should create or provide alternatives for parents to choose from.
- Creativity is the Hallmark in online schooling.
You can watch a recording of the meeting below: