The Institute of Education will start offering free online teaching courses for all educators and parents in order to help them improve their online teaching skills, Education Minister Owen Bonnici said today.
He was addressing a press conference centred on the shift in education that schools have experienced ever since the start of the Covid-19 outbreak in Malta.
These free online courses are being offered by the Institute for Education and will be divided into two groups – one group of short online lessons for educators and another group of lessons for parents.
Institute CEO Joanne Grima said the institute thought that during these challenging times it could offer some help to those educators and parents who had to quickly adapt to online learning by offering free sessions about the topic.
The lessons being given to educators will serve them to improve their educational competences and in their career progression as part of the Accelerated Progression Scheme.
During these lessons, the educators can talk with the lecturer and also to one another, ask queries, discuss and participate as though they are in the same class. With every training course they successfully conclude, the educators will be able to accumulate hours of teaching until they reach the 360 hours needed to progress in their scale in 6 years’ time instead of 8.
In total, there will be 17 lessons offered between April and June with the aim to cover a variety of subjects such as inclusion, working together with parents, intercultural communication, how to help the development of children to be able to learn independently and be responsible for their work, how to facilitate learning for those students on the autism spectrum.
These courses are available to all educators whether they are teachers, LSEs or heads.
The second set of lessons being offered by the Institute for Education are aimed at the parents that wish to help their children with school work currently being given and this follows a general request made to the Ministry for Education and Employment from parents wishing to have the opportunity to learn how they can better assist their children.
A total of 41 lessons will be offered between April and June. The subjects that are included in these lessons include: how one can help children with autism at home, how to entice children to read and write, how one can help children with learning difficulties, how to improve mathematical skills of children, how to collaborate with schools and how to improve orthography in Maltese.
Grima said that 475 parents are already interested in these sessions while 140 educators have applied for them as well – “this response has shown us that we need to learn from this crisis and keep on adapting our work online.”
Bonnici said that the ministry has done its best to see that shift to online education happen as quickly as possible and this was manageable with the help of stakeholders and dedication of educators, LSEs and parents across all education levels.
The Malta Independent asked if these sessions will be recorded so that both educators and parents can refer back to them. Grima said that the institute is planning on it but it needs the consent of those present.
This content was originally published here.