The world economy is not the only aspect that has been gravely affected by the recent coronavirus epidemic. People worry about their jobs, companies worry about their profit, governments worry about the economy but parents worry about their children’s health and education.
While more and more schools shut down every day to prevent spreading the virus in the community, parents and authorities alike are seeking ways to make sure the epidemic doesn’t affect children’s school progress.
Apart from education, huge companies like Amazon have asked their employees to opt for remote work in certain areas like Seattle, USA. And Amazon is not the only one. All of the Google and Facebook employees in China are working from home as a precautionary measure that protects their health but also makes sure the work is done!
Working online is something that is considered a privilege and even though there have been multinational companies that allow their employees to work from home once or twice a week, online work is still a fairly new option. These days, however, in the midst of the global outbreak of coronavirus, working online does not seem like an option; on the contrary, it has become somewhat of a necessity.
When it comes to the students that have been affected by the spread of the virus, online education seems to be the basic answer to the serious problem. A New York school is among the schools that shifted to the virtual world after their closure because of the virus. The school’s students attend classes via videoconference.
One would think that this would be a difficult shift and it would take a lot of getting used to on the part of the students especially. According to teachers, however, the shift happened very organically and not only did students get instantly used to it, but they also loved the fact that after days of being secluded in their homes they now get to connect with their friends and teachers and have a somehow normal school routine.
As the experts claim, Greek parents seem to start adopting and trusting the online model of education more and more. Besides, as we all know, no parent worries as much as a Greek parents does. Most of these parents are just trying to find ways to keep their children at home as much as possible without compromising their educational progress or the normality of their schedules and online education seems to be the only option right now.
Greek Lessons OnLine, an online Greek school that teaches Greek to kids and adults all over the world, is getting ready to conduct its online celebration for the Greek Independence Day.
“Greek schools have closed, celebrations have been banned but our participants for the 25th of March celebration are enjoying getting ready for the event,” Nancy, a Greek teacher who is responsible for the celebration tells us. “What’s great with online education is that it is what offers our students a sense of normality right now and of course necessary contact with kids their age.”
The school is experiencing a similar mobility towards its online classes from people of the Greek diaspora everywhere.
“More and more Greek parents are reaching out to arrange Greek classes for their children in the midst of this crisis,” Lisa Kaneli the online School’s Administrative Coordinator who is based in Greece points out. “Parents who live in Europe, the USA and recently Africa have all started to worry about continuing with their children’s classes in their local Greek schools even though most of them are still open,” she adds. “That’s why the last two weeks we have had many forms of interest from parents who would like to make sure their kids do not come in contact with large groups of people as is the case with the typical church Greek Schools.
Costas Kotelidas, Director of Etsi Mathainw, one of the biggest online tutoring centers in Greece, says that the interest in online education is more growing than ever considering that the school year in Greece is halfway through.
“As parents saw that more and more schools were closing, we witnessed a growing interest in our online group classes, especially for secondary education since students are preparing for their university entry exams- Panellinies- and no one knows what will happen if the epidemic worsens. We are doing our best to accommodate everybody’s needs, especially now that all Greek schools have closed,” Mr Kotelidas, an educator himself, remarks.
While everybody hopes for this world crisis to end as soon as possible, it is quite reassuring to know that there is an online alternative that could keep Greek children everywhere in school while they are healthy and happy in the safety of their homes.