Following the Education Minister’s recent concerning remarks about the 2020/2021 school year, an expert who works closely with the Ministry indicated that Lebanon is not ready to have schools open this September.
Dr. Nada Oueijan, Head of the Center for Educational Research and Development (CERD), stressed, “We are not ready to start teaching in September,” calling for immediate action to resolve “the reasons that led us to this situation.”
Schools in Lebanon, Oueijan argued, are not all ready to resume education next month, and this will hinder a smooth beginning of the upcoming school year.
In addition to that, she cited the lack of decisiveness and problem-solving, the poor logistics that would ensure an optimal environment for students and teachers, the necessary facilitative legislative measures, the high stationery prices, and other factors.
Notably, Minister of Education Tarek Al-Majzoub was quick to dismiss Oueijan’s assertion.
“The statement of the head of the Educational Center for Research and Development, Dr. Nada Oueijan, is unpremeditated, and does not reflect what is happening in the Ministry of Education,” he emphasized.
He assured that the plan for a safe return to school is ready and will be launched within the week that follows the next. “The situation does not bear misplaced stances,” he said.
Considering that Oueijan’s position regarding the state of the education sector reflects the overall atmosphere in the country, it will be interesting to see how the Education Ministry’s plan will tackle the serious obstacles impeding the sector.
As the deteriorating living conditions push more students to migrate from private to public schools, which have become flooded and overwhelmed, it has become clear that many students are facing the threat of missing out on school.
That is not to mention that those who do end up securing a desk – or, more likely, a virtual one – will probably face the same problems that students faced in the last school year; most notably, an incompetent online system.
If all goes well, the Ministry’s plan should have the relieving answers to all of the students’ and teachers’ pressing problems in a couple of weeks’ time.