Why does China not have schools?

Coronavirus : "This uncertainty is difficult to bear"

Where is the online learning controlled from?
Sven Heineken: The teachers also work from home. However, we set up access days on which a few colleagues are always there on a staggered basis, for example because they need material or have to do something on the scanner. But there can only be a few in school at any given time.

Does everyone have the equipment to control online learning from home?
Robert Cohnen: Since this school year at the latest, all colleagues have had Surface Pro devices, which is a hybrid of tablet and laptop. As a result, they are also networked with the school networks and have access to the resources and technical possibilities. The high school students also have these devices.

There are always new crisis plans because of the corona virus

What is the biggest challenge right now?
Susanne Hess: That is securing the degrees. We have developed different contingency plans depending on when the reopening will be. We have already postponed a lot, our goal now is the written exams in April - for the Abitur, the technical college entrance qualification and the secondary school leaving certificate. We really hope it works.

Sven Heineken: In the event that the pupils cannot take the exams here, the Central Office for Schools Abroad, in cooperation with the Conference of Ministers of Education and Cultural Affairs, is currently working on a plan to give our pupils an opportunity to take exams in Germany - but that is not the case Plan B, but rather C or D. This is of course counteracted by the fact that the virus has now broken out in Germany as well. The question now is where is the better location.

School social work also helps with educational issues in this situation

Did the teachers and families of the students actually leave China?
Robert Cohnen: There are families who spent the Chinese New Year holidays in Germany and then didn't return to Shanghai for the time being. However, the children take part in the online lessons at different times. Nobody has unsubscribed from us.

How many students are currently not in Shanghai?
Robert Cohnen: About two-thirds were gone over the New Year break, but many families have now returned to Shanghai. Now less than a third are not there.

In this situation, many children and colleagues certainly have many questions about the coronavirus and also have fears. How can you help?
Susanne Hess: We offer school social work with trained staff at both locations. You have set up a kind of help desk. It's about fears that have to do with the coronavirus, but also about possible upbringing problems because you sit so closely together.

Precautions against the coronavirus have psychological weight

Sven Heineken: It's really not easy. I'm also a father, have two children, an 11-year-old son and a 13-year-old daughter, who have been schooling at home for almost five weeks - that is a real challenge for the children. You can move outside in Shanghai, but a lot is closed, the children are more or less tied to the house because the social contacts that they otherwise have through school are no longer available. And even this uncertainty is so difficult to bear. When do we open again? This is a question that worries us all.

In the meantime, the corona virus is also spreading in Germany. With your experiences, what would you advise people in Germany to do?
Robert Cohnen: Above all, keep your nerve and follow the advice of the Robert Koch Institute. Hamster purchases are not necessary at all.

Susanne Hess: Of course, it is also important to counter fear. Precautions are also of great importance from a psychological point of view. They convey: We protect ourselves and protect others.

Sven Heineken: It is also important to maintain proportionality. We do not consider it appropriate to close a school for weeks or months. And above all, the question arises: What do the numbers have to be so that schools can reopen? It is an illusion to assume that there will be no more corona case in China in the foreseeable future.