Teachers may require students to keep cameras on when classes are taking place, a measure that improves the quality of teaching and the relationship between students and teachers.
In accordance with the Resolution of the Council of Ministers and with opinions of the National Data Protection Commission, teachers may require that chambers connected, given that they are in the classroom, and there is no dissemination of images, ”he told Lusa the Ministry of Education.
Teaching classes on a black screen, without being able to see the class, was one of the great challenges that teachers had to deal with in March, when students were forced to take distance classes for the first time.
“Not seeing students, not understanding whether they are motivated or not, whether they are following what we are saying makes the job of the teacher much more difficult“, I told Lusa the president of the National Association of Group Directors and Public Schools (ANDAEP), Filinto Lima.
In the past school year, many teachers complained about not getting students to turn on the cameras. The teachers knew that without eye contact it was even more difficult to keep the class interested. Teachers can now demand more from their students.
Second Filinto Lima, the situation in this new period of distance learning “is no longer so problematic”. “There was a sensitization of the school principals with the students and parents so that the students kept the cameras connected and now this is a more residual problem”, underlined the director of the group of schools Dr. Costa Gomes, in Vila Nova de Gaia.
More than one million students in primary and secondary education have been taking distance classes since the beginning of last week, due to the worsening of the pandemic situation in Portugal. At the moment, there is still no timetable for returning to classroom teaching.
Complaints about Internet failures
Meanwhile, parents and school principals have warned of flaws in the internet network that are making it difficult to monitor online classes.
“A the network we have doesn’t allow digital education to work 100% because the digital plan is delayed and the students end up being the ones harmed ”, he told Lusa Rui Martins, from the National Confederation of Independent Parents and Guardians (CNIPE), where complaints have come from parents who fear that failures on the Internet will leave their children behind in online classes.
According to Rui Martins, some are unable to enter the platforms where the classes are being taught, while others suddenly stop listening to teachers and colleagues, losing the thread that is being taught.
The situation also worries teachers, who end up wasting a lot of time waiting for all students to “enter” classes, in turn recalled the president of the National Association of Group Directors and Public Schools (ANDAEP).
According to Filinto Lima, “the problem that used to exist in schools has now passed home”, the problem is having too many people connected at the same time.
If in big cities it is necessary to reinforce the internet network to respond to everyone, in some areas of the interior the problem is still in getting the call to arrive, Filinto Lima told Lusa.
The idea is corroborated by the president of the National Association of School Directors, Manuel Pereira, when he stated that “the country is not all the same and there are areas where the internet is too slow for children, for adults, for everyone you need to use it ”.
Schools had the autonomy to define the percentage of synchronous and asynchronous classes and in some educational establishments students spend most of their time with online classes.
Manuel Pereira also recalls the problem of younger students who do not have the autonomy to be able to use the platforms alone or solve any problems that arise.
However, the president of ANDE makes a positive assessment of this return to distance learning: “It is going much better, at least it is the feedback we have of students and teachers “. The experience gained in the confinement of March last year “allowed now everyone was much more prepared”He added.
“Families are already more adapted to new technologies, not least because many have acquired equipment that they did not have before. On the teachers’ side, there is also already an experience in the use of platforms that in March did not exist ”, he told Lusa.
The Government’s computer distribution program remains far from reaching the majority of students. So far, 100 thousand pieces of equipment have been delivered, with the distribution of another 335 thousand planned.
The Ministry of Education decided that students who lacked the equipment to accompany online classes should return to schools, where there is material and a team to help them follow the classes that continue to be given.
“This survey was carried out and at the moment all these students are in schools. Of course, this is a process that is constantly changing ”, he told the Lusa Filinto Lima.
For example, if a student’s computer breaks down, he has to go back to school to continue taking classes, just as when shipments of equipment arrive to distribute to students, they can then take classes from home.