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The controversy over whether or not to send our children to school in the midst of the pandemic has made me meditate on the subject. The dilemma between keeping kids safe but without classes or getting educated but at risk of contagion has been incorporated, as expected, into the political debate.
Although the discussion has radicalized the positions of the parties in conflict, here we will not fall into the temptation of getting into a discussion about the relevance of adopting one or another formula. Rather, we will try to find a solution to the problem. Let's see.
In order for the boys to return to their classrooms, it will now be necessary to implement a series of sanitary and social behavior measures that, without a doubt, will end the integrity purposes of the traditional educational system. The interaction between the students will now be suspicious and distant because all the provisions that are taken will always be insufficient for the parents. And I don't even want to imagine what recesses will be like under the new regulations: no games, no shouting, no laughter...
Faced with these possibilities of liquidating the student spirit of our schools, it is necessary that we "take off our mask", even for a moment, and evaluate the matter seriously.
Let's start from the assumption that the pandemic will disappear in a few months, from the moment a mass-produced vaccine is launched on the market. Let's say that the return to normal would come in about six months and that by February 2021 school activity would be returning to its previous channels.
So, the solution to the problem could be reduced to applying a temporary formula that keeps the boys safe and studying the subjects of their courses at home. Imagine a strategy that includes the following measures:
- By the Government. If the federal government has been distributing resources in spurts to stimulate entrepreneurs and workers, it would be nothing special for it to provide the school sector with a small piece of financial aid so that each student has a laptop and enjoys the free service of Wifi.
- For the technology sector. Large technology companies would contribute by providing students and teachers with effective and enjoyable educational programs.
- For the Educational Sector. Teachers must now switch to their new role of supervision and control of school performance and always be at the hand of their students to provide them with timely advice.
- For the family environment. Parents will exercise their authority over their children to induce them to attend online classes in real time and, as always, will assist them in preparing their homework.
And just as the pandemic showed that working at home was an efficient alternative to office work, the same could happen with distance education. Think about the benefits of having the boys during school hours in the bosom of the home:
- It will give them more time to study and to rest because they will not have to travel to school.
- They will be better able to focus on their intimate relationship with their computer screen.
- There will be no peer pressure because each student will absorb the knowledge at their own pace.
- Physical separation between partners will minimize the chances of bullying" among them.
- Expenses for transportation to school, textbooks and school uniforms are eliminated.
- The cost of education will be substantially reduced.
- School buildings will not be essential.
Surely at this level many readers will be thinking not only of other advantages of studying at home but also of the many disadvantages that having children spend so much time at home entails. However, we must not forget that we are in the midst of the worst pandemic that the contemporary world has known and that to survive it it is necessary for each sector of society to contribute its share of sacrifice.
And if this experiment is successful, we will see that when the pandemic has passed into history we will have inherited a modern, efficient, massive and more accessible educational system than the old traditional model. We will think then with innocence that "there is no evil that for good does not come..."