Covid-19 makes S'pore primary school teacher job more tiring but worth it, anonymous post claims

An unsung hero.

Syahindah Ishak| April 01, 12:42 AM

Singaporeans cheered and clapped for front line workers on Monday night, Mar. 30, to thank those who have been working hard to combat the Covid-19 pandemic.

And it appears one other group of professionals deserve a pat on the back as well: Teachers.

Anonymous confession

An anonymous post supposedly written by a primary school teacher and posted on Facebook has shed some light on the daily work load of those in the education profession, who overnight, had to cope with the new measures implemented to mitigate the risk of Covid-19 in schools and a scrambling of existing lesson plans.

The anonymous post was uploaded onto the anonymous confession page NUSWhispers on Saturday, Mar. 29.

The teacher made it clear that she was speaking for herself, and not on behalf of other teachers, who she wasn't sure share the same sentiments as her.

Without Covid-19

The post started with the teacher lamenting about her work load.

She wrote: "With the current Covid situation, there are many feelings that I'm going through. I can't say this is the same for other teachers out there, but I just want to shed some light into what we do on a daily basis."

She then went on to explain how her job was like before the Covid-19 pandemic.

Back then, she woke up around 6:30am and would start work at 7:30am.

She added: "Our day doesn't end even when we leave school."

She said that teachers do not have regular meal hours and on some days, they are forced to eat their food in 10 minutes.

Their work carries on at home too as they have to continue marking papers and plan for future lessons.

"This continued every single day. I even felt guilty for taking breaks on weekends," she wrote.

With Covid-19

Since the Covid-19 outbreak, her job has become more complicated.

The students were initially banded under her teaching subject, which meant that they came from different classes.

However, with the current Covid-19 measures, all students had to revert back to their form classes with an "exam-seating style".

So now, she's teaching new students.

She explained: "We've to somehow go and figure out on our own where did each teacher stopped based on the scheme of work. (sic)"

On top of that, she wrote that she needs to take note of the students who are on leave of absence (LOA) or stay home notice (SHN).

She also has to keep track of when each student is coming back and which worksheets need to be given to their respective form teachers.

Uncooperative parents, but eager students

To add on to the stress, there are a number of uncooperative parents that teachers have to deal with.

For example, she stated that some parents did not declare accurate information to the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) and Ministry of Education (MOE), thus causing unnecessary problems.

This has caused her, she acknowledged, to act out and take it out on the ones who didn't initiate the problems.

She wrote:

"I've to admit, I get very frustrated at the measures implemented and the selfishness of people. I've definitely brought these feelings to my classroom."

Despite that, it is eventually her students who make things a tad easier.

Amid the uncertainties, her students were still eager to learn and look to their teachers for the discipline of formal structure.

Her students never once complained, she revealed.

She ended off her post by reminding other teachers the true purpose of their job:

"I can't say for all teachers out there, but I do feel unappreciated at times like this. But I just want to let all teachers know that, our students appreciate the calmness we bring to our class...So, let's do this for our children, what we believe strongly in and win the fight again Covid. (sic) As long as our hearts are for the children, that's all it matters."

You can read the full Facebook post here:

Top images from MOE/FB & NUSWhispers/FB.