The leadership of the Teacher Trainees Association of Ghana (TTAG) has laid some requests before the government to be able to study during the COVID-19 break. The trainees, in a meeting with the leadership of the National Council for Tertiary Education (NCTE) on April 8, 2020, to discuss the virtual learning platform to be rolled out in the Colleges of Education.
The virtual meeting which also involved the leadership of the Transforming Teacher Education and Learning (T-TEL) discussed among other things, including the challenges associated with the closure of schools, the virtual learning platform as well as microsite update, which is an online learning platform which shall allow the students to access online materials faster and easier.
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The leadership of TTAG presented to the meeting, some challenges being faced by students who already had access to the virtual platform.
The challenges include the cost of internet bundle, network problems and the access to smartphones among others.
In a statement released by the Association on April 14, 2020, the leadership of the Association requested that with the issue regarding how to get all students involved equally, learning experiences should be created to cater for all spectrum of students.
The trainees requested that perhaps, a dedicated Television Channel should be dedicated to the teaching and learning experiences in the Colleges of Education.
In addition, the leadership suggested, that WhatsApp, Google Classroom and other virtual platforms can be used to access Education Information.
With the High Cost of data bundles, the TTAG suggested, that the NCTE and other stakeholders should meet with the telecommunication networks to subsidize the cost of data, or zero-rate it for educational materials to be easily accessible.
The trainees’ leadership also suggested that all materials meant for their lessons should be downloadable to cut cost.
For students who could not access all the platforms being suggested, the TTAG suggested that such students should be brought back to campus and to observe all social distancing protocols so that they can be taught by selected tutors.
TTAG suggested that there should be instituted, a dedicated network shortcode, which shall act as a customer service number which should have dedicated tutors available, ready to help students who have problems with their lessons.
The trainees’ leadership also suggested that it will be prudent for tutors to send out surveys via Google Sheets or WhatsApp to trainees teachers to find out why they may not be able to take part in e-learning in order to find individualised ways to help them.