By Carlos G. Corpuz, School Principal III, Rio Chico NHS

No one had ever imagined that a pandemic like Covid-19 would greatly affect our lives where
everyone was caught unprepared. Never in our wildest dreams and imagination that a malady would
create so much fear and anxiety. Even the system of education has been tremendously affected from
learning delivery, resources including the preparation of modules and video lessons up to assessment
methods as to how students’ performances would be evaluated and graded. However, where are we
during this time? How do teachers cope up with these challenges? What roles do school heads
significantly play in times like this when everyone has to extend a helping hand?
As part of the preparation for the opening of classes, school heads encouraged teachers to attend
webinars that would capacitate them in the new set- up of education, such as teaching strategies in the
online setting, alignment of different learning tasks to the most essential learning competencies,
conceptualization, use, and creation of self-made videos for online and effective assessment methods
in gauging students’ performances. Like a soldier preparing for a battle, these are only some of the
things that teachers had to grasp and internalize to become fully prepared. Aside from the school tasks
that they need to carry out, they are also parents who need to assist their children’s education at home
to ensure that learning takes place at the comfort of their home.
Despite these overwhelming tasks of teachers, they are equipped to be as pliant as a bamboo
which is capable to sway and bend even under the force of a strong wind. In times like this, teachers
need support especially from their school heads. On top of other priorities, it is the support that they
truly need. Just by knowing that their school head is there to uplift their spirits whenever they are tired
and feeling down, the passion to continue making the big difference would still be there.
School heads unceasingly continued to solicit whatever support that the external stakeholders
could add to ensure that students learn and remain protected especially those in vulnerable situations.

Now that the number of Covid 19 cases ascends and unfurls in populated areas and mushrooming in
areas that were once safe, it is a topmost concern to make sure that learners must be exposed, not to
Covid 19 perils, but to different productive learning experiences that they must enjoy even without
face-to-face interaction. As the health crunch metastasized into a more serious disruption of life and
learning, school heads must continue to build support for improved program outcomes by engaging
and involving relevant stakeholders and letting them realize the importance of their ideas, presence and
helping hand. Through the active partaking of parents in the community, more and more people will
become motivated and engaged in sharing the passion for learner success. The ultimate key in order
to attain the heroic common goal of prioritizing learners’ education, mental health and well being lies
in listening attentively to various ideas and concerns, working collaboratively in a team and taking
responsibility of the outcomes.
Covid 19 must have shaken every little pillar of the education sector in the world and the
abrupt switch to the new normal of education generated golden opportunities to reshape learning into
a new paradigm that is more creative, flexible and resilient as this pandemic may not be the last to
severely affect schools in the country. Therefore, all valid experiences, key lessons learned from the
challenges met must be carefully interpreted and analysed to intensify planning for long-term solutions
and to take advantage of this crisis to pause and reflect that after every storm, no matter how destructive
it is, there will always be sunshine that will come out to warm and give hope to everyone. It is extremely
necessary to deliver safe and supportive learning experiences for learners to allow them to exhibit
their creativity and versatility and place learning in the context of real-life situations through the
enhancement of fundamental competencies and life skills that they need for their future.
The challenges may be tough, tiring and draining, but all school leaders must carry on with
strengthening coordination at local levels to mobilize partnerships to realize the true spirit of
“bayanihan” in the midst of pandemic where there is a need for quick and effective response in shaping
the learning climate to suit the learners’ needs and conditions. All aspects of planning and preparation
should be geared towards the attainment of meaningful learning that would holistically develop learners

for into globally competent citizens who have the ability to innovate, recognize perspectives and take
valuable actions.
School leaders must recognize their power and strength and show their gift of competence to
understand the grandiosity of this chance, even faced with a great biological enemy, to demonstrate
their leadership and to influence others to remain calm and optimistic to envision a better system of
learning delivery. By committing conscious effort to focus on being productive and if plans, programs
and activities are crafted towards effective distance learning experiences, education would still be
delivered to every learner wherever they are and in whatever learning delivery mode possible
Covid 19 has been greatly affecting the system of education, but never the teachers and the
school leaders. Now, more than ever, all sectors must be engaged to persevere not because they are
told to do so but because they are internally motivated to help the current and future generations.