The Government should provide facilities for teachers to conduct online teaching during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Ceylon Teachers’ Service Union (CTSU) said.
CTSU General Secretary Mahinda Jayasinghe told the Daily Mirror that most of the teachers do not have the necessary equipment.
“Teachers don't get a salary which can be satisfied about. They can't afford to buy the equipment that are needed neither able to bear the expenses incurred on mobile data facilities to conduct the online teaching,” he said.
“The mobile signal strength in most of the areas in the country is poor. Data bundles used to communicate are also very expensive and not sufficient,” he said.
"The Government claims that they have selected a total of 23,000 children from grade 6 to 11 out of two million to provide Tabs. But they did not mention as to what would happen to the rest of the children,” he quipped.
However, it was reported that only the charging racks, but no Tabs, Mr. Jayasinghe said.
Therefore, the Government should look into this matter and take appropriate steps to provide the facilities to continue with the teaching activities he said.
“Schools in the country had to be shut for nearly nine months due to this pandemic situation.
Several teachers are indulged in online teaching activities through strenuous effort, but no solutions for those who do not have such facilities,” Mr Jayasinghe said.
“30% of the people in the Eastern Province, 50% in the Western province (WP), 20 to 40% in other provinces have access to the internet, while the rest of the people get no opportunity to adequate access to the internet,” he said.
Also, the online education system has exerted extra pressure on students and they have become addicted toñ using mobile phones computers and other related devices too much, the CTSU General Secratary added. (Chaturanga Samarawickrama)