Covid no excuse for failure – Ngihpondoka
Despite high numbers of Covid-19 infections at Oshana Region schools, the education ministry believes it gave pupils enough time to catch up on missed work.
03 November 2020 | Education
Education minister Anna Nghipondoka yesterday visited Oshakati and Iipumbu senior secondary schools (SSS) in the Oshana Region to encourage teachers and pupils as they prepare for exams, despite the high number of Covid-19 cases recorded.
She told the pupils that their education was in their own hands and that they should not allow the coronavirus to overpower them.
With 1 126 pupils, Oshakati SSS recorded its first Covid-19 case on 9 October and now stands at 144 cases.
As oral examinations started about two weeks ago, the school managed to procure shield glasses and protective equipment for teachers for the testing period.
Meanwhile, Iipumbu SSS has 1 190 pupils and recorded 68 cases, with seven recoveries. The school has 71 pending results, with samples which were taken last Friday.
Nghipondoka warned the packed hall not to use the pandemic as an excuse for failing exams, as the ministry believes it has arranged well enough for them to return to school and catch up on missed work.
“I am visiting with a message of hope. Covid-19 will not disappear like closing a tap. It’s normal to harbour fears, but we need to be optimistic,” she said.
She told the pupils to think positively, and that bad situations are not permanent. It depends on how an individual reacts to the situation they find themselves in, she added.
“Covid or no Covid, tell yourselves that you still have a bright future. Live a normal life in an abnormal situation and do not despair. No excuse about Covid-19. We expect you to pass. Covid will not change your destiny. You are my blessed children,” she said applause.
Investing in your own future
Ngipondoka also cautioned pupils against negative thoughts and to desist from thinking that they are doing their teachers or parents a favour, but rather investing in their own future.
She said the pupils should abandon thoughts of “as long as I write, even if I do not pass”.
“No. You should tell yourself that you will pass because you were taught and you deserve to pass.”
Meanwhile, Oshana education director Hileni Amukana said the region struggled at first but managed to procure protective equipment for teachers and for those handling examination papers.
The region has recorded cases in six schools, she said.
All schools have created an arrangement to separate pupils who have tested positive from those who are awaiting results and those who have tested negative.
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