Development for Peace Education (DPE) a civil society organisation working with communities at the grassroots level and in schools in seven Community Councils launched its remote meetings approach featuring the Zoom platform with teachers this week. This was in preparation to hold a remote training session with teachers who are part of the Peaceful School Model. While the preparatory meeting was expected to be attended by teachers from twenty-four schools, only teachers from eight schools were able to participate. Others were not able to participate because of challenges including but not limited to poor telephony network reception and incompatible phone models.
The meeting went well and there was clarity of both video and audio, though others were only able to join the meeting when it was already on-going. As reported earlier, the aim of the meeting was to prepare for a remote teacher training workshop on peace education and values. This is to be facilitated by a Cape-Town based International Peace Education expert Mrs Nancy Rousepolous.
Participants attending the preparatory meeting agreed that there should be more than one teacher from each school participating in the training workshop, to be held later. They said that this arrangement will allow teachers to provide support for each other in applying the lessons from the workshop to school and other real-life situations. The decision to hold both the preparatory meeting and later the training workshop through web-based platforms follows the worldwide social distancing and lockdown imposed by the outbreak of COVID-19. This platform limit meetings in order to avoid possible transmission of the virus and is in line with current global practice. Besides, it supports DPE commitment to not only implement safe practices in its own spaces but to influence others on how to do the same. But DPE is promoting rural access to internet and other social media platforms.