(A wide view of the pupils at Bungoma D.E.B Primary School in Bungoma town and their Head-teacher Mr. Tobias Khisa (right). IMAGE CREDIT/BungomaOnline.co.ke)
Upon full face to face school learning reopening on last week on 4th January this year, schools are supposed to follow protocols stipulated by the Ministry of Health to prevent the spread and spiking of Corona virus. The protocols include; frequent checking of student’s temperature, hand washing with running water, wearing of face masks and maintaining a social distance of 1.5 metres.
In order to achieve the social distance in schools, the Education Cabinet Minister Prof. George Magoha and the Ministry of Health under CS Mutahi Kagwe directed school’s heads to make use of tree shades in their respective compounds. This has come with its own challenges which may hinder with normal learning activities in various schools.
For example, the northern part of Kenya, which dry and hot, higher temperatures, frequent strong winds with dust may disrupt learning. In cold and wet areas like Central Kenya, which experience cold weather and frequent rains pose a challenge too.
After rainy weekend, children will return tomorrow for another week of learning under trees. Other than being mindful of the wet grounds, let's think about the impact of their sitting posture to the skeletal system. pic.twitter.com/jZFBZZLIwE
— James Mutinda (@JMutinda_snr) January 10, 2021
In densely populated schools it has been a great challenge to maintain the stipulated social distance. This disrupts ongoing classes on the tree shades. The concentration of the students during class sessions is greatly affected.
Inadequate supply of face-masks will put more students into a risk of contracting the COVID-19. This will force a student or a pupil from a poorer background to use his or her own more than once without cleaning it. Some may even exchange masks.
Some schools in areas with inadequate water supply may force its students to stay without frequent hand washing,which is preventive protocol. However, even the supply of safe drinking water is major bigger challenge.
Schools will be forced to adjust and draw plans on how to maintain and make sure the health protocols are followed to the later.
Adequate water supply for frequent hand washing, adequate supply of masks and building of more classes with time to curb the social distance challenge.
The government may work hand in hand with schools in order to make sure the students are not in any risk to spread the Corona virus among the students.