The unalloyed mark of a leader is the willingness and persistence to stick with a bold course of action. An unconventional panic mitigation strategy in an era of hyper-competition and nonstop disruption has been the need of the hour. Covid-19 pandemic has infiltrated lives and disrupted normalcy in our education system. Initially, we were not prepared, but the education system responded quickly and adapted to meet the demands of online schooling.
It was more than trial and error. Postponement of exams led emergency meetings, changes in the syllabus, the mode of teaching and established norms for connecting with pivotal stakeholders like management, teachers, non-teaching staff, parents and students.
Boosting confidence and empowering the unnerved teachers, parents and students was the need of time. Using a virtual platform, to its’ fullest capacity was the main challenge. Thankfully a team of courageous teachers with positive attitude stood strong in facing this challenge.
Many virtual classroom applications were used, explaining the new teaching strategies to parents was difficult. Conducting online classes under parents’ supervision was not easy for teachers. Putting together a proper online and offline timetable with ten minutes interval between two periods of academic subjects was followed, with consistent efforts we achieved stability. Co-scholastic activities like debate, and interviews with well-known personalities were also arranged.
The significant role of schooling in society enhances its’ importance but if we fail to highlight the benefits of schooling, the existence of our system could be questioned, in this virtual world. It is our duty to retain the importance not only of academic subjects but others like art, physical education etc. by experimenting with different online applications. Teachers evaluated using online applications. Taking doubt solving classes with remediation, was welcomed by parents which was indeed surprising. Teachers are now true facilitators.
We started with panic but now, are sailing calmly, where everyone is enjoying unlimited resources. Publications like Macmillan supported us, with e-books which made teaching easy and helped us to gain confidence of parents.
This journey of online schooling sharpened leadership skills in Principals. Keeping a keen eye on news, changes in state education policies, results, online admission, constant communication with parents and teachers, strong follow-up made them more versatile, alert and strong. I certainly know that achieving this goal is only possible with a supportive management and strong teaching colleagues, I feel blessed experiencing this fulfilment.
Mrs. Smita D. Jathar
Sharda Mandir High School