- Léo’s Insights 2019-2020
- Léo’s Insights 2020-2021
- Léo’s Insights 2018-2019 Academic Year
The COVID-19 pandemic was a game changer of immeasurable proportion! I have tried to show how it should have caused us all to rethink our understanding of what schools, learning and education are and how they are delivered.
We discussed how schools are largely viewed as daycares rather than the educational institutions they claim to be. We then addressed how the age-old concern respecting the socialization of children was shown to be more of a school handicap than that of the home educated.
We showed that in-school academic achievements and grades were essentially meaningless if all students simply advanced to the next grade without clearly demonstrating that objectives were learned or programs completed. Likewise, we addressed how fears of accumulating learning gaps while being stuck at home were ill-founded, if indeed being home was a negative.
All of these lessons led us to expose the fallacy of the existence of school standards or of their being measurable. Finally, it was shown that sending all students home did not endorse home education as much as it normalized the extension of school ideology and methodology into the home, hence the ubiquitous referral to all the students being forced into “home schooling.”
If there was one thing that was clearly manifested it was that distress was overwhelmingly expressed by fear of change, fear of modernization and fear of doing things differently from what has always been done. Indeed, I believe fear was far more the “epidemic” than the actual COVID-19 “pandemic.”
I realize the risk in making such a comment, but I need to share this observation because I believe fear blinded many to a very positive outcome of the response to the pandemic. Families were reunited. Children could no longer go to school so they were home. At least one parent had to be home with them. Parents often could no longer work out of the home and so they also were sequestered at home with the family.
Nobody celebrates the loss of jobs or reductions in pay. That’s not what I am saying. What I am saying is that many people rediscovered how important family was, either by their absence by being quarantined from extended family or because of our being forced into our own immediate nucleus.
Many children were delighted to be home and to have mom and dad there also. Others may not have shared that sentiment. Parents started valuing children as blessings and all discovered how much fun they could have when focussing on each other’s fundamental value and needs.
Projects were engaged in or finally completed, videos were watched, with parental supervision, and games long abandoned were pulled out for the first time in years. Bad habits were either checked or discarded and new, better habits were created in order to better live together.
Most importantly, I believe the sequestering of families gave everyone the chance to check their own behaviours and to learn how living with others requires that others be more important than ourselves.
Now, I am under no illusion as to how prevalent these positive changes were experienced. There were undoubtedly many situations which were less than ideal and just as the quarantine gave reason to reflect on positive things, it also provided opportunity to make already bad situations worse.
Yet, no matter what really transpired as a consequence of the COVID-19 response, I believe everyone was challenged to re-evaluate a number of things including their values, ideology and position in life and family. Some may even have discovered or rediscovered that God was in control. Imagine that!