The Covid-19, came without any notice, so too the second Covid wave. The education sector has not been left out and has made the lives of students topsy –turvy. The second wave of covid-19 pandemic has hit students the hardest because it comes at such a critical moment; a time when they’re laying the foundations and making decisions that will affect the rest of their lives. Academic schedules have been radically disrupted, most students have limited computer access, lack of smartphones, Wi-Fi is kind of erratic in nature, there is a lot of electricity outage and synchronous virtual classes are very stressful for teachers not used to working with technology. However, since there are not many options for the time being, the education sector is trying its best to adjust and adapt to the new normal. I am sure, many new learnings, new perspectives, new trends will emerge as we head into The Great Unknown. While we know that the impact of this virus will be far-reaching, education needs to change to be able to better prepare our young learners for what the future might hold. It is natural that the educational fallout will affect many more for years to come. With students being able to gain access to knowledge, and even learn a technical skill, through a few clicks on their phones, tablets and computers, we will need to redefine the role of the educator in the classroom or the virtual classroom. And in a world where knowledge is a mouse-click away, the role of the educator must change too. This may mean that the role of educators will need to move towards facilitating young people’s development as contributing members of society.
My dear students, you are an original masterpiece; imitating someone else will weaken your value. So, write the masterpiece that has not been written. Sing the masterpiece that has not been sung. Paint the masterpiece that has not been painted. And create the masterpiece that has not been created. Remember the famous quote, ‘symphonies begin with one note; fires with one flame; gardens with one flower; and masterpieces with one stroke’. People go through all kinds of struggles during this time. I am not scaring you but you have got to make your life a masterpiece. When you change the quality of your thinking, you change the quality of your life, sometimes instantly, just like instant coffee or instant photograph.
Dear students, a simple twofold suggestions for you:- “If you don’t go after what you want, you’ll never have/make it. If you want a flower, go to the flower garden /shop. If you want to see a Rhinoceros, go to Kaziranga and if you want the ball to come to you, then run and get it. Let this second wave / pandemic not be the time for excuses or reason to lag behind. Secondly, ‘if you don’t step forward, you’re always in the same place.’ Start taking small risks, learn to take decisions, and don’t wait for parents’ order. Trust yourself, and try to be an inspiration yourself, and nothing else can take you down.’ In conclusion, I want to say that after the heavy rain, we can see the sunshine. So be your own sunshine, be your own masterpiece, work hard, and make yourself feel worthy. I wish good health to everyone. Stay safe!
Fr. Hans Igness SDB, (MA, B.Ed, M.Ed & Research Scholar), is Principal, Don Bosco Hr. Sec. School, Imphal