"The worst thing they wore is not being able to mix or the patio"

First day. The fifth grade group in the classroom where the teacher explains the dynamics of the course. / Juan Carlos Alonso

The 'zero masks' is imposed in schools. Europa is one of the 34 that open a two-year classroom, but it is still under construction

Louisa del Rosario

After two and a half years of the pandemic, the Infant and Primary schools of the islands began yesterday the
school year without covid restrictions.
The 'zero masks' was the norm of a day in which families re-entered schools soaking up this year's news. Goodbye to the bubble groups: "At last the football matches between the fifth and sixth graders will return," said the director of the Europa Néstor Álamo school, in the Jinámar Valley, in the capital of Gran Canaria, Luz Santana Cabrera.
"It's the worst thing the boys wore, because they're friends and they couldn't mix even in the yard"remember.

190 schoolchildren will attend the Colegio Europa Néstor Álamo this year,
one of the 34 island public centers that this year will open classrooms for two-year-old babies. «
Everything is new and exciting. There are a lot of things that will change this year by opening these classrooms. We have to change our mentality, there will be diapers, pushchairs, families entering and leaving at the wrong time... We have to remain calm and live in the moment to learn from this pilot experience and see what works and what doesn't", admits the school director .

An opportunity

For the community “having the option of 'public day care', as they call it, is an opportunity. The closest one is in Pedro Hidalgo.
And for us, sending two-year-olds to school means that in three years they will have routines and habits that will help us a lot.», says the director of the center.

The classes for these students, the enrollment of 18 babies has been allowed, will start a little later.
The center is now adapting two of its classrooms (one of them as a psychomotricity room) and is still under construction, although he hopes to start classes in less than two weeks.
Despite this, the staff that will attend them is already hired: a teacher, an assistant, a technician and a dining room assistant. "The fact that they are here will make it easier for us to have a personal interview with the families, decide on the purchase of teaching material and organize ourselves very well," says Luz Santana.

very excited to start

Aída Pérez is the teacher who is in charge of the classroom for two years. It's her first time. «
This year I did the oppositions.
I am new in every way, at school, in teaching and in the course that is going to be taught because it is a pilot course». They have already held a general information meeting to explain why the start of the course is postponed and now the individual interviews will begin «to talk about the period of adaptation to school, to the class and to us».

"The truth is that I really want to, with a little fear in the sense that you don't know what you are going to find, there is uncertainty, but I really want to give it my all."

The fifth and sixth graders were one of the first to enter the center yesterday. The school summoned students and families in brief meetings in which they explained how this course has been organized. Tablets and licenses are already prepared so that each boy and girl can attend classes.
They only need to buy two exercise booklets. families are satisfied. "Starting the course has cost us just under 50 euros," says Ana García, the mother of a fifth-year Primary student.

New teachers have arrived at the Europa Néstor Álamo school on account of the 1,600 more teachers that Education and unions agreed to hire at the end of July.
“We have a huge faculty (25 teachers). We have people for everything and the specialists will dedicate themselves exclusively to their work”, comments the director who is glad that they are freed from tutorials and that they can dedicate themselves to directing projects. Even so, with the entry into force of the new rule that reduces school hours from 25 to 23 hours it will be "a sudoku, a time to say 'help'".

At school they hope that this year with the return to normality, or at least the 'new normality' due to the covid flu, they can resume relationships with families. «Jinámar has a stigma, but I who have worked as a teacher, head of study and director can say that it works very well, the educational community supports families a lot, the relationship is very intense, families seek help at the center and that, with the pandemic, had affected us. Here we do a lot of gatherings, snacks, outings... We have a family commission that decorates the school for Christmas, Halloween,... and in these two years that had diminished, "acknowledges Luz Santana.

There will also be "good things" that have been learned in these months. Opening several school doors allows everyone to be inside at 8:30 a.m. Telematic communications with families are already very fluid. "Today you call them a 'classroom' and everyone understands you." We have an impressive ICT plan », she assures before recalling that in her classes there were schoolchildren who shared the mobile to do homework during confinement.

For the person in charge of the center, the important thing this year is that if the pandemic allows it, they will be able to “unite” the groups again. That is what they will spend these weeks before starting to review and undertake new content. "The Lomloe is what worries us the least, we are very used to change," the director laughs.

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