PREPARING FOR THE NEW NORMAL IN OLIFANT
Soon the school will enter the new academic calendar for the school year 2020 / 2021. As we already know and have experienced, the Covid-19 pandemic has greatly affected children’s learning activities throughout Indonesia, even throughout the world. During the past three months, schools, teachers, students, and parents, have experienced a period of adjustment with distance learning. With regard to the new academic year 2020/2021, the government and the Indonesian Ministry of Education, have provided some guidance on implementing the New Normal in schools or New Ways of Learning. There are various requirements that must be met, if schools are later to be allowed to have face-to-face learning activities. How should schools prepare themselves for the transition to New Normal or New Ways of Learning? The Covid - 19 National Committee said that schools can begin learning activities if they are in green areas, or areas not affected by Covid - 19, and have obtained permission from the Ministry of Education and local government offices. In addition, there are several conditions that must be met by schools, both in regard to infrastructure and health safety protocols.
Olifant School is committed to be a pioneer in the world of education and always strives to prepare learning activities and support systems, in accordance with the current situation, and even prepare children to face the future. Attention to the safety and security of students is of top priority for Olifant, including the teachers and other school staff. In relation to the preparation of New Ways of Learning, Olifant has formed a Covid-19 Committee, consisting of the Preschool, Elementary, OHS and Senior High School teachers and parents, as well as involving the local community.
Starting on July 1, 2020, the Covid-19 Committee, teachers and employees, has began to implement new habits in school, and will complete the preparation of the new health and safety protocols. Some of the requirements of the National Co-vid19 Committee - if schools are later allowed to open, include: availability of school sanitation and hygiene facilities. This includes clean toilets, washbasins, hand sanitizers and disinfectants. Olifant has ensured that the infrastructure of sanitation and hygiene facilities is complete. Olifant School has been working in collaboration with the local health centre and several hospitals, to support school health services, so that if later the School enters the transition period, or New Ways of Learning period, everything is ready.
All members of the school community wear mandatory masks. The use of masks and face shields for child protection is one part of the health protocol that will be socialized and shared to all children during this school year. Teachers and special staff will monitor their use in daily school life. Checking temperature using a thermogun, before members of the school enter the school area, has been routinely carried out since March 2020, before physical distancing was implemented, and will continue to be done, if the school is given permission to carry out face-to-face activities.
These are the minimum requirements from the government for opening schools during the New Ways of Learning period. Through the formation of Covid19 Committee, Olifant School aims to prepare for the transition by getting accustomed to the new situation. The use of disinfectant daily in the school environment, and the preparation of new health and safety protocols, are a priority for Olifant, especially at this time, so that whenever the education office and the local government state that schools can carry out face-to-face learning, Olifant School is ready.
Of course, to achieve success in this transition, Olifant recognizes the very important role of parents and family, who can encourage children to start getting used to following healthy habits at home. For example, the habit of washing hands for 20 seconds, wearing a mask when leaving the house, keeping a distance, and having a healthy lifestyle.