Following the announcement by the President on 23 March, with a complete lockdown for all South Africans citizens due to the Covid19 outbreak, at TOGI, plans were immediately put in place and students and staff informed.
Fortunately TOGI students are in the ideal situation to have all their teaching and learning presented in a fully online mode of delivery. Therefore, the academic programme can progress without any interruption and students will manage to complete their studies in the specified period, indeed a great advantage.
Teaching Practice, which forms an important part of the practical and academic programme, is however affected, as students will not be able to visit schools during the period initially planned. Not wasting any time, the Teaching Practice Coordinator, Ms Adrienne van As, in collaboration with HoD Dr Westraadt and lecturer Ms Shahida Anthony, started working on plans to solve the problem of the closing of schools and the consequences on the Teaching Practice of TOGI students. As the future is not certain, plans A, B and C are already in draft format and time will tell which will eventually be best suited to provide a solution most beneficial to our students.
At onset, students were all reminded of the availability of the Student Support Portal and that they should contact Ms Raeesa Ryklief if they needed help in coping with the current situation.
Communication immediately went out to staff and students to inform them that tutorial sessions and the availability of the teaching and learning hub at the CTSC will be terminated.
Official letters went out to every student to inform them of the adapted study programme, which was introduced to accommodate the moving of the Teaching Practice period. An adapted year programme was uploaded on the LMS, to indicate the changes in the study programme.
Staff members worked hard to adapt the academic programme accordingly and communicated the changes to students with the provision of updated module guides. HoD, Dr Westraadt requested from staff, frequent and detailed communication, consideration and leniency towards our students in this difficult and uncertain time.
All meetings, discussions and interviews between staff members, the Mancom and committees, are conducted via ZOOM, enabling discussions and virtual contact.
CEO, Dr Lourens Erasmus, comforted staff members in an e-mail and sent out an address to all TOGI students to encourage and uplift them with guidance on how to remain positive and to persevere during this period, which affects everybody involved in the institution.