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Aug 18, 2021

Faber Criticizes Ministry of Education on Distance Learning Approach

Patrick Faber

When the United Democratic Party lost at the polls in November 2020, the Ministry of Education, under the stewardship of former minister Patrick Faber, already had plans to introduce several initiatives for distance learning.  According to Faber, the incoming government promptly ditched those arrangements in favor of its own plans.  With an increase in COVID-19 cases and students now having to resort to distance learning, Faber says that the Ministry of Education is once again unprepared to address these challenges.


Patrick Faber, Party Leader, U.D.P.

“We cannot fault the government for making the kind of decision not to convene face-to-face.  We can certainly criticize them for putting us in this position yet again without being prepared.  When it happened under the U.D.P.’s watch we did not know what to expect and we did not have the kind of time.  Had the administration followed through on what the U.D.P.’s plans were to offer proper distance learning and we scrambled, remember we had TV programs, we had printed literature and worksheets, work books, whatever you want to call them.  We started the tablet distribution initiative, we were looking to engage publishers in offering digitized textbooks on these devices for high schoolers.  There was Digi Learn, so by now high schoolers should have been fully equipped digitally where teachers would have been able to give instructions, students would have been able to do their reading and preparation on the various different platforms that would have been offered through Microsoft Office, I think it was, there was a suite of about twenty-five software applications that would have assisted students, but all of that was thrown to the water.  At least I certainly have not heard of their plan, so to say now, seventeen months after, “Okay, we’re going to now continue with distance learning” and you had already gotten out of the planning mode to go distance, that we would have gone face-to-face, the government is caught with its pants down again.”

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