Common Exam preparation challenged by rural schools’ Internet woes

As the year nears its end, teachers and students are in full preparation for their annual examination. With the introduction of Common Exams for classes six and eight this year, teachers can be seen taking extra initiatives to guide the students. In Chhukha’s Phuentshogling Gewog, the remote Lingden Primary School is putting in every effort to prepare for the common exam. However, the school is battling poor Internet connection.

Lingden Primary School is located some 40 kilometres from Phuentshogling town. There are some 50 students, of which eight of them are in class six. They have started preparing for the common exam. Even the teachers are seen putting in effort to ready the students for the exam.

However, their preparation is challenged by their school’s poor broadband Internet connection. The teachers for the last two months have been sharing Internet from their mobile phones, bearing the Internet cost themselves to teach the ICT subject.

Along with five other subjects, class six students have to sit for the ICT exam.

Since the ICT exam has to be completed within a given time period, the teachers are worried that slow or poor Internet connection on the exam day could hamper student’s performance.

“No matter how prepared we are, if there is no good Internet connection on the ICT exam day, their exam will be spoilt.  Internet may not be a problem for schools in the town. But here, if the connection remains like this, it will affect our student’s performance,” said Dechen Wangmo, a teacher.

Lingden Primary School’s Principal, Tobgay said, “In towns, it won’t be much of a problem as there is good Internet connectivity and also the parents have laptops and smartphones. But here, the parents do not have these gadgets. So, we are taking extra hours in the morning and evening to guide the students.”

Lingden Primary School is not the only school facing this same challenge. Even Chimuna Primary School in Logchina Gewog is having the same problem.

The two schools have written about the issue to the relevant offices about a month ago. The schools said that officials from the GovTech Agency have arrived to work on the issue, today.

Kinley Dem, Chhukha

Edited by Sangay Chezom

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