A Peek at the Education System in Indonesia When the Pandemic Hits

Education is a very important aspect for a nation because of this education will be formed a young generation that is smart, qualified, also able to face and solve life’s problems, which will be passed down to the next generation. Education plays a very important role in character building, the development of science and technology. The pandemic that hit brought many changes to the world of education. Not only teachers and students are affected, parents also feel overwhelmed. How is the education system in Indonesia? The education system implemented in Indonesia in the new normal era underwent changes. Prevention of transmission of the corona virus by social distancing to avoid potential crowds is the main reason children have to go to school from home. Changes that occur include education which was originally face-to-face to online or online only. Another thing that has changed is the adjusted learning targets and also the adaptation of the curriculum used.

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It did not stop there, a series of other policies were issued in response to the development of the spread of Covid-19, such as the cancellation of the Ujian Nasional (UN), adjustment of school exams, implementation of distance learning, and an online approach to the student registration process according to Circular Number 4 of 2020 concerning Implementation of Education Policies in the Emergency Period for the Spread of Corona Virus Disease (Covid-19).

Educational challenges in Indonesia during the pandemic

1. Use of Technology

Learning that is done online inevitably has to take advantage of technological assistance to support the learning process. Indeed, there are many applications or platforms that can be used to help students learn. The problem is, is Smart Guru ready to operate it? If the teacher is ready, there are other questions that must be answered, namely about the readiness of students and parents. Are they familiar with the application used? Or are there supporting tools available so that the learning application can be run. Technological problems also include economic problems. Many students in remote areas cannot access online learning because they do not have devices such as laptops or cellphones. Many also complain about the high quota required to operate learning technology. Not to mention the problem of geographical location that does not support.

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2. Challenges Faced by Educators and Parents

Various kinds of challenges must be faced for this online education system, in addition to personal discipline to study independently, facilities and resources are also important. The fact is that there are still many children who are constrained by facilities for learning, not only students, but also educators and parents who have difficulty providing learning devices such as cellphones and laptops as well as credit for internet connections. This online learning system indirectly makes the socio-economic gap that has existed for a long time widen during the pandemic. The Ministry of Manpower of the Republic of Indonesia (Kemenaker) noted that more than 2 million workers and formal-informal workers were laid off, with these conditions many parents had difficulty optimizing education for their children. In other circumstances, however, parents may be faced with a very difficult choice between feeding the family or paying for their child’s education. This has the potential to increase the dropout rate which is increasing.

Learning methods that can be used during a pandemic

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1. Project Based Learning

This project-based learning has the main goal of providing training to students to be more able to collaborate, work together, and empathize with others. This project based learning method is very effective applied to students by forming small study groups in working on projects, experiments, and innovations. This learning method is very suitable for students who are in the yellow or green zone. By carrying out this one learning method, of course, you must also pay attention to the applicable health protocols.

2. Daring Method

This method utilizes an online network, and can make students creative using existing facilities, such as creating content by utilizing items around the house or doing all learning activities through an online system. This method is very suitable to be applied to students who are in the red zone area. By using a full online method like this, the learning system delivered will continue and all students will remain in their respective homes in a safe condition.

3. Luring Method

Luring method is a learning model that is carried out outside the network. In a sense, this one learning is carried out face-to-face by taking into account the zoning and applicable health protocols. This method is very suitable for students who are in the yellow or green zone, especially with the strict new normal protocol. In this method, students will be taught in shifts (shift model) to avoid crowds. This offline learning model was suggested by the Minister of Education and Culture to fulfill curriculum simplification during this pandemic emergency. This method is designed to deal with curriculum delivery so that it is not too difficult when delivered to students. In addition, this one learning is also considered quite good for those who lack or do not have the supporting facilities and infrastructure for the online system.

4. Home Visit Method

Home visits are one of the options for learning methods during this pandemic. This method is similar to teaching and learning activities delivered during home schooling. So, the teacher holds a home visit at the student’s house at a certain time.

5. Integrated Curriculum

This method will be more effective when referring to the project base, where each class will be given a project that is relevant to the related subject. In this method, it does not only involve one subject, but also relates learning material from other subjects. By applying this method, in addition to students who collaborate in working on projects, other teachers are also given the opportunity to conduct team teaching with teachers in other subjects. The integrated curriculum can be applied to all students in all regions, because this method will be applied online. So the implementation of the integrated curriculum is considered very safe for students.

6. Blended Learning

The blended learning method is a method that uses two approaches at once. In a sense, this method uses an online system as well as face-to-face through video conferences. So, even though students and teachers are learning remotely, they can still interact with each other. This method is effective for improving the cognitive abilities of students.

         The COVID-19 pandemic is one of the reasons for us to be able to jointly make efforts to address a number of critical education issues in Indonesia. Because, it concerns the future of the quality of education and the welfare of the people in Indonesia. Apart from the obstacles in the world of Indonesian education during the COVID-19 pandemic, there are positive things that can be obtained, namely with the online learning system, students can do a lot of activities at home so that it can make it easier for parents to monitor their children.

        In addition, with this online system, educators and students can increase their creativity by making learning videos or with interesting power points so that students don’t get bored and students can also be more creative when they get the task of making learning videos. Basically everything that happens has its positive and negative impacts, including the covid-19 pandemic, although the impact is very large, especially in the world of education, this cannot be a reason to stop fighting to improve the quality of education in Indonesia for the realization of a golden Indonesia 2045.

Writer : Agnes Damora Siburian

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