Pros and Cons of Face-to-face Learning in Schools, Exposure to COVID vs Asocial Generation

Around 90 junior high school students in Purbalingga and 30 MTs students in Jepara, Central Java, tested positive for COVID-19 during the implementation of Face-to-face Learning (PTM) in schools which had only lasted two weeks as the PPKM level decreased. The Governor of Central Java, Ganjar Pranowo, asked the regions and schools to be honest in implementing PTM for students.

Ganjar Pranowo visited SMPN 33 Semarang to find that the students did not apply the Prokes and asked the teacher to make improvements.  (Photo: Courtesy/Central Java Public Relations)

Ganjar Pranowo visited SMPN 33 Semarang to find that the students did not apply the Prokes and asked the teacher to make improvements. (Photo: Courtesy/Central Java Public Relations)

“We have responded to the PTM cluster in Purbalingga. I have called the Regent, checked the location, and I asked for the school to be temporarily closed. The same thing happened in Jepara. I asked to close immediately. random. Regions or schools that are not ready for PTM should not admit that they are ready,” said Ganjar in Solo, Tuesday (21/9).

Ganjar further revealed that the Central Java Provincial Government has taken precautions by expanding random medical tests.

Amid the Euphoria of PTM Schools: Honesty and Readiness

For almost two years, students at the level of PAUD, TK, SD, SMP, SMA/SMK, to college students take part in learning online because of the pandemic. The low number of COVID-19 cases in various regions and the decline in the level of PPKM in Java and Bali have made the regions relax community activities, including PTM in schools.

Face-to-face school simulation at SMPN 1 Surabaya.  (Photo: Courtesy/Public Relations of Surabaya City Government)

Face-to-face school simulation at SMPN 1 Surabaya. (Photo: Courtesy/Public Relations of Surabaya City Government)

“In Central Java, there are no areas that are currently level 4 PPKM. The Brebes case recorded the COVID data incorrectly. Old data were included,” explained Ganjar.

Vaccination for students aged 12-18 years also motivates regions and schools to immediately hold PTM.

The concern of PTM in schools becoming a cluster for the spread of COVID was expressed by Professor Joko Nurkamto, a professor at the Faculty of Teacher Training and Education FKIP Universitas Sebelas Maret UNS Solo. When contacted by Mouab, Friday (24/9), explained that there were a number of important highlights in holding school PTM during the pandemic.

“Since the beginning of the PTM cluster, it has become a concern for us. All teachers have been vaccinated, so what about the students, now maybe only 50 percent are vaccinated. That’s vaccinations for junior high and high school. What about elementary students, aged 12 years and under, there is no vaccine? Pros at school must also be strict,” said Joko.

Joko added that the honesty of the school, parents and students is a determinant in anticipating the COVID cluster in schools.

“If there are teachers, students, or guardians who are sick, don’t be allowed to enter the school. Later it can spread to others. If a COVID cluster occurs at school, PTM activities are temporarily suspended and can be resumed when the isolation or healing period is over” , explained Joko.

Mendikbudristek Nadiem Anwar Makarim reviews the implementation of the National Assessment at a school in Yogyakarta, Tuesday (14/9).  (Photo: Kemendikbudristek)

Mendikbudristek Nadiem Anwar Makarim reviews the implementation of the National Assessment at a school in Yogyakarta, Tuesday (14/9). (Photo: Kemendikbudristek)

Minister of Education, Culture, Research and Technology, Nadiem Makarim on Monday (13/9) had a chance to see firsthand the activities of schools and campuses in Solo which held PTM. Nadiem assesses that PTM schools in areas 1 to 3 PPKM can be opened with strict prokes conditions.

“We really support local governments whose regions are currently at level 1 – 3 pushing for limited face-to-face schools and vaccination of students by implementing strict health protocols,” explained Nadiem.

Psychological Impact of Online School

Furthermore, Nadiem Makariem reminded the impact of school online to students, families, and the fate of future generations.

Students and teachers wear protective masks after the Indonesian government reopened schools by implementing a face-to-face learning process amid the Covid-19 outbreak in Pariaman, West Sumatra Province, July 13, 2020. (Photo: Antar /Iggoy el Fitra/via Reu

Students and teachers wear protective masks after the Indonesian government reopened schools by implementing a face-to-face learning process amid the Covid-19 outbreak in Pariaman, West Sumatra Province, July 13, 2020. (Photo: Antar /Iggoy el Fitra/via Reu

“The impact is that if we don’t move fast now, we’ll lose lost of learning which can be permanent. Permanent mental and psychic health in children’s psyche. Feeling lonely, experiencing conflict in the family, being social, and other permanent impacts. Especially for children who are developing. So PTM school is a risk that must be addressed. Not many see the risks of future generations,” concluded Nadiem.

Professor Joko Nurkamto emphasized that face-to-face learning (offline) is still the best compared to online or online.

“Teacher interaction with students directly at school or offline learning is still the best method online making students asocial, yes, not all of them are true, there is still socialization or interaction around the house. Village friends, close friends at home,” said Joko.

Furthermore, Joko reminded the school online there are still many shortcomings. Equipment, Internet connection, Teachers who are qualified in technology, adaptation of schools into a series of lists to run learning online.

“The problem is the quality of the learning materials” online. The teacher makes video recordings on the internet, then students access and do assignments, the teacher gives grades, that’s all. There is no personal assistance in understanding students. It’s different when learning in class,” said Joko. [ys/em]

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