Understanding School Teachers’ Perspectives about their Changing Role of Teaching Amid COVID-19 in Northern Pakistan

Research output: Other Conference ContributionsAbstractResearch

Abstract

The year 2020 embraced gigantic upheavals in the realm of education across globe. The wave of coronavirus affecting education like other fields started its journey from Wuhan China and reached Pakistan. Realising its gravity and direct effects on students’ health, authorities in Pakistan decided to close the educational institutions on March 16, 2020. Educational institutions remained closed for at least six months and re-opened on September 15, 2020. Closure of schools directly impacted students’ learning and teachers’ teaching. Education department of Gilgit-Baltistan and Aga Khan Education Service Pakistan like other systems in the country opted for alternative ways of teaching to reach to the students to continue their studies. Home-based assignments and provision of study packs and Tale schools are such initiatives. 
Using the theoretical lens of Angstrom’s cultural-historic activity theory (1987) which recognises home and community as main source/place of learning for a transformative pedagogy (Clarence & Renshaw 2020), this qualitative explorative study was conducted with the two systems of education exploring teachers’ perspectives and understanding of their changing role of teaching during COVID-19 and how their changing roles facilitated students’ learning at homes. Through semi-structured interviews and observations 10 teachers (7 male and 3 female) from both the systems were interviewed and their practices of changing teaching such as distributing home assignments by visiting door-to-door, checking the returned assignments and feedback. Contact with the parents were seen and observed. The findings show interesting local insight about teachers’ practices during closure of schools. The teacher argued that the authorities tried to produce homes as learning space believing that cultural knowledge and family practices have connections for learning. Unfortunately, such practices hardly been utilised. The study suggests for more practice of such learnings approaches and also raises questions on the quality of work, readiness of policy makers and teachers to continue education during unforeseen situations.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 4 Dec 2020
EventThe 3rd Conference for Higher Education Research - Hong Kong 2020: Innovations of Higher Education Amid the Pandemic: Institutional Management, Teaching, and Research Perspectives - Lingnan University, Hong Kong, Hong Kong
Duration: 13 Nov 202014 Nov 2020
https://www.ln.edu.hk/sgs/cher2020

Conference

ConferenceThe 3rd Conference for Higher Education Research - Hong Kong 2020
Abbreviated titleCHER-Hong Kong 2020
Country/TerritoryHong Kong
CityHong Kong
Period13/11/2014/11/20
OtherHeld at Lingnan University in Hong Kong, The Conference for Higher Education Research – Hong Kong is a multidisciplinary conference co-organised by Lingnan University (Hong Kong) and the Asia Pacific Higher Education Research Partnership (APHERP), and in collaboration with University of Bath and Durham University.

The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in school or university closures all across the world, triggering unprecedented challenges for education systems. According to UNESCO, 1.5 billion learners are out of the classroom globally, from pre-primary to higher education. Of the 195 countries that had closed schools in April 2020, 128 have yet to announce plans for their reopening.

It is clear that the future of higher education needs rethinking in many ways amid the pandemic. The International Association of Universities (IAU) Global Survey on the Impact of COVID-19 on Higher Education finds, among other things, that (i) COVID-19 has had an impact on international student mobility at 89% of HEIs; (ii) at almost all HEIs, the shift from face-to-face to distance teaching did not come without challenges; and (iii) 80% of HEIs reported that research has been affected by the pandemic at their institutions.

The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the world’s higher education will be long lasting. We in higher education must accept the reality of a paradigm shift. The crisis situation created by the horrible pandemic has served to jolt us out of the trap of yesterday’s status quo and make necessary changes.

The CHER – Hong Kong 2020 aims to foster dialogue on the staggering impact of COVID-19 on the future of higher education and the innovations required to meet the global challenges, with special focus on the following topics:

- Institutional Management
- Teaching and Learning Innovations
- Emerging Higher Education Research Directions
- Impact on Finance and University Governance
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