Are PH schools ready for blended, face-to-face classes this 2021?
For instance, some 24 higher education institutions (HEIs) were recently allowed by the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) to hold face-to-face classes, starting this second semester of the academic year 2020-2021. In a recent statement, CHED said these select HEIs can now conduct hands-on training and laboratory classes for their third and fourth-year students enrolled in allied health-related degree programs via a limited face-to-face system. Among those prioritized are students of programs, such as Medicine, Nursing, Medical Technology/Medical Laboratory Science, Physical Therapy, Midwifery, and Public Health. This new setup aims to ensure that the students can achieve essential learning outcomes in specialized laboratory courses and hospital-based clinical internships despite limitations due to lockdowns and safety protocols. It also helps ensure that students graduate on time and provide additional manpower to the country's health system. A high time to gear up IT Networks For Vertiv, a global provider of critical digital infrastructure and continuity solutions, these new developments in the educational sector's blended learning approach reinforce educational institutions' need to gear up their IT networks. "In recent years, we have seen how the education sector continues to harness technology to provide impeccable learning experiences for students. But when pandemic happened, it accelerated the need for schools to embrace new solutions to enable blended learning systems," said Jason Lim, country manager of Vertiv Philippines. In the blended learning approach, educators combine face-to-face and digital experiences usually delivered as part of a physical classroom experience. To enable this setup, they need to ensure that their IT networks are always available to equip their educators with essential tools, systems, and other materials to enable mobile learning. Lim also noted that since students, teachers, and non-teaching staff still have limited time going to their campus, the visibility, access, control, and management of all IT assets remains a challenge for IT managers. This is crucial to ensure smooth operations, especially when schools need to change their learning approach for their students. Maintaining these assets also helps prevent cyberattacks and other threats, particularly with the increasing personal information stored online and personal devices connected to the IT network. Some schools even use digital tools to enable safety protocols, such as checking temperatures and record-keeping of people who go in and out of the campus.