Students and Educators are about to face a different “normal” from what they have used to be. Everyone, from the policy maker to teachers are scrambling to find the best compromise to continue educating the students despite of the pandemic that remains uncontrolled. As such, there are feasible ideas presented and accepted as to how everyone should proceed.
Traditional education relies on face-to-face approach wherein teachers and students converge inside a classroom within school premises. This became problematic as the possibility of when one or two among asymptomatic-COVID19-positive students make a closer contact with unaffected person thereby transmitting the virus to far more individuals. It is that this scenario compelled policy makers from adopting a new approach in education. Consequently, digitalization of education was pushed and adopted by everyone.
Online learning became a viable alternative in pushing forward. Through this, internet became the major channel of delivering lessons and keeping in-touch by teachers to their students. For students, computing device and digital connectivity becomes a mandatory tool to connect to a new learning platform.
As long-time digital agent, this transition is long overdue. Transitioning to digital form of education has been on-going since this millennium started. Students were able to adopt easily but was hampered by teachers who are unwilling to accept the transition from traditional learning to digital learning. There were words often exclaimed by educators, “bawal ang type-written!” – a form hampering the inescapable truth that digitalization is the new normal.
The pandemic brought by the coronavirus reveals weakness of traditional education but bares the strength of digital education. Digitalization is not and should not be limited to interaction between distant persons, in actual fact, digitalization is a process of discovering new faculties of knowledge made available by interacting wealth of knowledge contributed by everyone. Internet is an unfathomable wealth of knowledge waiting to be discovered.
All the options presented for continuing education leads to digitalization as the primary channel of delivery. My prayer is that this transition may not just be a stop-gap until the pandemic is over, but must become part of our future to further strengthen the foundation of our education and cope up with new opportunities coming forward.