The Ministry of Education has stated they hope to teach students in person at the start of the new academic year.
Speaking on Raajje TV's 'Fala Suruhee' program, Minister of State for Education Dr. Abdulla Rasheed Ahmed and Permanent Secretary Ahmed Adil shared details of the ministry's plans for the new academic year.
Dr. Abdulla declared the ministry prioritizes students' health, and since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, all the ministry's decisions are discussed with Health Protection Agency (HPA). He claimed that considering the current situation, he is hopeful students will be able to attend school.
The minister revealed that the lessons taught by COVID-19 were using a blended mode in teaching, and the importance of being prepared. Although students will be attending school for lessons, some amount of teaching will take place online so that students and teachers familiarise themselves with the concept, and continue to experience online learning.
Dr. Abdullah mentioned ongoing training for 1000 teachers regarding digital education in collaboration with Mahatma Gandhi Institute of Education for Peace and Sustainable Development.
Permanent Secretary Ahmed Adil revealed that the work to employ enough teachers for each school was mostly complete. It is incomplete as efforts to transfer teachers to schools are also underway. Adil further stated that acquiring local teachers is prioritized, and the expatriate teachers are employed where locals are unavailable.
Some Maldivian schools have selected Indian nationals as Qur'an and Arabic teachers. Five Arabic teachers and five Qur'an teachers have been assigned to schools in five islands. Adil claimed that the Indian nationals were chosen as the ministry failed to find Maldivian teachers after repeated announcements.
As the subject of Qur'an contains some Dhivehi content, the schools have made arrangements to ensure that students face no difficulties.
While the expatriate teachers are to teach Qur'an, Maldivian teachers will be assigned to teach tajweed (linguistics) and ilm (knowledge). The Permanent Secretary stated that principals of the schools claimed they were satisfied with the work of expatriate teachers.
While the academic new year begins on August 10, Dr. Abdulla stated that students will begin learning once they collect their booklist. The minister revealed that the distribution of booklists will begin as soon as books for the new syllabus of some subjects are printed. He stated that booklists would be distributed with the printing of the new books.