Many students participating in home-learning programs also say that the workload of online classes is larger than that of regular classes. The general consensus is that home-learning programs — although highly beneficial and a good alternative to school as schools are closed — still require some getting used to by students, as it is a novel concept and not many are experienced with them.

However, although the closing of schools does have a silver lining (home-learning programs where students are still able to learn), the true sufferers of the government order of school closings are the students in less fortunate situations and the students who are in schools that are not well-funded.

This is because those students lack the devices and internet access to be able to participate in online classes, and the schools do not have the capacity to teach online. Unlike in New York where devices are distributed to students by schools and private companies, in Indonesia, there is yet to be this kind of effort.

The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in at least one positive thing: a much greater appreciation for the importance of public schools. As parents struggle to work with their children at home due to school closures, public recognition of the essential caretaking role schools play in society has skyrocketed. As young people struggle to learn from home, parents’ gratitude for teachers, their skills, and their invaluable role in student well-being, has risen. As communities struggle to take care of their vulnerable children and youth, decisionmakers are having to devise new mechanisms for delivering essential services from food to education to health care.

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