The COVID-19 is spreading all over the world. It is alarming to see the spread of it in developed nations much more than other countries. The COVID-19 infection rate in India remains low relative to population size, till date. To an extent it is because of fast government action to quarantine people and shut borders. Response is “impressive” says the World Health Organization. But officials are still preparing for broader outbreak and community transmission. India reported its 33rd death from COVID-19 on Wednesday (1 April 2020).
Despite being the world’s second most populous country, with more than 1.3 billion people, the nation so far contained the virus to a hundreds. Hope the virus will not not spread as rapidly as elsewhere. Central Governments and the Federal govts. are doing their best in making the people aware of the dangers of it on the one hand, and on the other, following strict restrictions and shutdowns. The World Health Organization has commended the effort of India. Taking rapid actions to limit travel by suspending visas and quarantining all incoming travellers has helped. All international passengers entering India undergo Universal Health Screening. According to health officials, more than 1 million passengers have been screened at airports, limiting the entry of coronavirus.
The response also mirrors India’s reaction to previous disease outbreaks, including Ebola in 2014 and Nipah in 2018, when people were quickly put into quarantine or under surveillance. Indian citizens have been advised to avoid all non-essential travel abroad, and citizens have been evacuated from Iran, Italy, China and Japan.
The Central Govt. declared a countrywide lockdown of schools, colleges. All Board examinations have been postponed. As per the order, all our schools in India is closed. Same is done in Nepal and other South Asian Countries too. As per the instructions we have closed all our institutions.
At this juncture each school authorities are doing their best according to the needs of the place and instruction of the governments. Karnataka schools are helping the stranded people, migrant workers and the poor people with food and necessary items.
Ranchi has allowed two schools as of now for Shelter Homes. JEA, there, has formed a task force to monitor the work. Several Jesuits are nominated to the Task Force by the Provincial.
In Ranchi food packets have been distributed to thousands of people at St. John’s school for the Stranded workers who cannot home due to the shutdown.
Our Alumni (http://www.jaaindia.com) are on the forefront in helping the needy. JAAI is collaborating with the local govt. agencies in helping the Corona affected people. JAAI regularly have ZOOM meetings to see the progress and needs of the people. Alumni is organizing active Corona Care Centre in Trivandrum. It is a 24-hour facility that has to be manned by 50 people across 10 roles. They act in 2 shifts. It is open for all in Kerala. (https://model.coronasafe.network )
JEA Secretary is in touch with the Delegates to know the update of each region. “In Kerala” says the PCE Fr. Thomson SJ, “we have offered our schools to be used for any help by the government. However, govt. has not used it as it is still not needed. We are in touch with the Govt. officials”. There is a Corona Counselling Centre running in Loyola School, Trivandrum.
The Secretary of JEASA has made available to all our schools in SA a valid document called, ‘Key Messages and Actions for COVID-19 Prevention and Control in Schools prepared by UNICEF and WHO. It contains all the necessary precautions to prevent the spread of Virus (the document is attached here).
Taking the total shutdown in consideration JCSA (SA Conference) decided to go for an online Inclusive retreat from 4-12 April 2020. This will give a deeper reflection on the pandemic situation which take us closer to God, our Creator. This is in line with the UAP, showing the way to God in this crisis situation. We believe that God is telling us something deeper in and through this pandemic. We are one humanity. We forgot it and fought wars, we fought not only in the name of religions but also of God! We divided us in the name of religions, Caste and Colour, imposed sanctions on other countries, exploited the nature. We must realise the follies of these. Perhaps post Corona world will be a different one. JEA is actively involved in shaping the spiritual reflections. More than 8000 people have registered from across the world for the Online Retreat. Our staff, Alumni, Religious and others have registered for the retreat (www.jcsaweb.org) .
Some of our schools have taken creative, practical, productive steps in engaging students who are at home, to study, and learn creative skills of their choice. One such example here for you to see.
Making the Quarantine Productive through technology.
In view of Corona/Covid-19, the Department of School Education and Literacy, MHRD and Govt. of India have declared total Lockdown throughout India. It was also directed to work from home and utilize this period constructively by undertaking different activities.
Therefore, the school management hereby requests all the parents and the students to make the best use of the quarantine duration in various productive ways. The students can involve themselves in activities designed for enhancing the 21st Century Skills, for example – Social Skills, Life Skills, Culinary Skills, Mathematical Literacy Skills, Scientific Literacy Skills, Reading Literacy Skills and other Language Skills.
For the same the students are invited to do the following:
- A) You can select any topic from your course book of any subject (either from the session 2019-2020 or the forthcoming session 2020- 2021) and present the chosen topic by using any one or two of the following ways.
- Story/Essay writing, Poems, Songs, Raps, Banners, Charts, Drawings etc.
- Power Point Presentation
- Short skits
- Video Songs, clippings etc.
- Dance Videos
- Working Models
- Theater Activities
- Collage Making
Teachers have been asked to monitor the students from home.
Thereafter, based on the class and subjects on which the content is prepared, you are requested to forward your activities to the following subject teachers for filtration and further after the approval of Fr. Principal, the best videos will be uploaded on the school’s official Website with your name and Class. Your activities can be viewed by all the parents and the students of our school. (http://www.stxaviersschoolnevta.com).
Hope the combined effort of all us will defeat the Virus and we will be able to regain the restart our educational institutions with new vigour and vitality. Let us all be united in prayer and wellbeing of all.