I was having a discussion with my co-teacher this morning. She told me how the other co-workers were discussing about putting up curricular materials online. This was mentioned because they have a feeling that after the Chinese New Year holidays, there will be an increase of COVID-19 cases.
About 4,000 Taiwanese citizens who are overseas will be coming back to Taiwan for Chinese New Year, and because of this, some of them are suspected of coming into Taiwan with COVID-19. There has been a total of 842 cases, 7 deaths, and about 731 recovered. If the number of Taiwanese that come back here for the holidays cause the COVID-19 numbers to get pushed up, this will effect even the school system. If any student in any Taiwanese school district gets COVID-19 and returns to school and spreads it, that particular school will have to be shut down for 14 days, if two or more schools are shut down, then all the schools in any specific district will be shut down.
This is why my co-teachers are preparing for doing online teaching. However I am skeptical of that with regards to elementary age students, because I know people who are parents of elementary age kids, and they will tell you for certain that online education is not working for elementary school kids. High school kids? Yes, elementary kids, no.
So far, Taiwan has no vaccines for COVID-19, the numbers are still very low but the cases are expected to increase after the Chinese New Year Holidays. (I can’t even leave Taiwan because I don’t have 14 days to quarantine). So I really hope that they keep the numbers down.
As for online work, this makes me wonder, in case the public schools should turn to online teaching as a result of the increasing number of COVID-19 cases, how will this effect us foreign teachers? Will we have to do our part? How many of us are ready for doing online work? Will they get rid of some or many of us by the end of the school year?