HISSAN Kathmandu helped its member schools thrive during pandemic and new leader will continue the legacy

0
11

Narendra Bahadur Adhikari, CEO of Himalaya College is the President of HISSAN Kathmandu. Due to Covid-19 pandemic, neither could the convention of Central HISSAN nor HISSAN Kathmandu be conducted in time. It’s been almost five years that HISSAN has been waiting for an appropriate time to conduct the convention. However, most organizations have conducted their convention and handed over their leadership to the successor of the time.

Considering this bitter truth, Narendra Bahadur Adhikari has been eager to handover the leadership to new president by conducting the convention within the month of Chaitra. Excerpts:

As the covid-19 pandemic brought about adverse effects in all sectors, especially in education, what activities are being carried out by HISSAN amid the pandemic threats and crises?

The covid-19 pandemic had an adverse effect globally which struck hard in almost all sectors. And Nepal could not be an exception for such a predicament. In the initial phase of the pandemic, there was uncertainty, pandemonium and ambivalence everywhere, and the Government was also in a huge quandary due to unprecedented maelstroms; as a result, it seemed strenuous to systemize the education system.

However, the HISSAN took an initiative to bring all the education institutions together virtually for finding out a proper solution to the problem created by the pandemic in order to smoothen teaching and learning activities. The government could not find out an alternative for customizing the academic activities, but HISSAN proved it. The institutions under HISSAN conducted various activities, such as quiz contest, speech competition, debate competition, oratory and so on with the support of technology which engaged students and reduced the fear of the pandemic in them.

The Kathmandu HISSAN is conducting a range of extra-curricular activities and virtual fairs when the central HISSAN is completely stagnant. Why could Kathmandu HISSAN not stimulate the enthusiasm of the central HISSAN?

In my perspectives, the central HISSAN is not in hibernation rather it is working on making policies and programs. Katmandu HISSAN has been conducting virtual education fairs and other activities in the coordination and collaboration with the central HISSAN. The Kathmandu HISSAN brought all the education institutions under the umbrella of HISSAN in collaboration with the central HISSAN. As a matter of consequence, the virtual edu- fair conducted by HISSAN in collaboration with College Readers magazine was possible due to the proper guidelines and consensus of the central HISSAN.

Since there is strong dissatisfaction among the members of HISSAN that HISSAN could not play a pivotal role in regularizing teaching and learning activities during the pandemic, what is your opinion on such an allegation?

HISSAN is an umbrella organization of all private colleges of Nepal. Its main motive is to bring all the academic institutions under the same framework and work for a common cause: preparing intellectual and skilled human resources. So, HISSAN has been working for developing a proper teaching and learning environment and providing framework and showing pathways to successful transfer of teachers’ learned expertise to their disciples. Even at the time of the covid-19 pandemic, it brought all the college management, teachers, parents and students to one platform and espoused students throughout their learning endeavors.

Covid fear doesn’t seem to end easily. What is your master plan to cope with such a pandemic in the days to come?

All the educational institutions faced insurmountable repercussions of the pandemic. Not only this, even the institutions in Nepal faced natural calamities, viz. mega earthquake including man created predicaments such as political vandalism and interferences. However, the Government’s first attack in on the education system, especially on private institutions.

We had faced adverse challenges at the times of devastating earthquake and the long-lasting covid-19 pandemic. Coronavirus affected our education system horrendously leaving marred scars on its delivery. Nevertheless, we were committed to rising even at the time of covid threats, thus finding an alternative way to use technology as a means of education dissemination.

Consequently, no sooner had we started our physical classes than a new variant of coronavirus (Omicron) started howling as a threat over our educational activities. More than the real threats, media started exaggerating the fear of the new variant which resulted in more dreadful threats in the public. And the Government’s first target is always education sector. So, following the emergence of Omicron virus, the Government announced the closure of schools without consulting academic experts and stakeholders. It’s ludicrous to see other sectors running without the fear of the new variant, but all the academic institutions were threatened to remain closed. The hardly existing academic institutions are again in financial crises and are on the verge of permanent closure. Most teachers are deprived of receiving their salaries and students in remote areas are living in remorse since online education is the rarest privilege for them.

Nonetheless, the Government has announced that academic institutions will be allowed to conduct their classes in the presence of students from the first week of Falgun by adopting all safety measures. We are hopeful that we can rekindle the hope of many young learners that they will be able to come to school again and continue with their learning endeavors.

In your opinion, is HISSAN unable to convince the Government and CCMC for conducting physical classes when other sectors are opened to the public?

In fact, we have skepticism about the expertise and negotiation power of the so-called experts. The so-called experts recommended the Government to the closure of academic institutions without consulting the stakeholders. To be true, the Government did not consult the stakeholders and academicians before making the decision on school closure. The government and the sycophantic experts didn’t see the necessity of consultation with us even for such a serious issue.

The HISSAN Kathmandu along with the central HISSAN has failed to get new leadership for the past five years whereas other similar organizations have successfully conducted their conventions in time. What’s your say?

We are following the Government’s health protocols. We are more than anxious about providing education to our students during the pandemic rather than changing the leadership. HISSAN is always one step ahead of the Government in terms of easing academic activities- be it virtual or physical. Therefore, the convention is not more important than existence of institutions in hard times.

The Government has proclaimed that we are not supposed to organize a convention which require lots of people because of on-going threats of a new variant. I think such a predicament won’t last long and we will certainly be able to organize the convention in the month of Baishakh 2079 if it’s not possible in Chaitra. Our surmise adheres to organizing the convention of the central HISSAN following the completion of all district level HISSAN conventions.

Finally, what suggestions would you like to convey to the parents, students, college runners, and stakeholders to run academic institutions and regulate teaching and learning activities amid threats of the covid-19 pandemic?

First of all, I would like to suggest all the concerned authorities to care about their and their students’ health. Secondly, I would suggest them to wait and follow the policy of the state. Being an integral part of the government, HISSAN should not be excluded from the main policy making body. So, I suggest the college management to run the college by following all safety measures since the government has already eased the way to come to normalcy.

Similarly, I would like to suggest students to come to the reawakening state to continue with their study. And for parents, I would suggest they give importance to education of their offspring. When there are no physical classes, online platform is an effective way to carry on our academic activities during pandemics and epidemics. We are now so used to technology that it has become an integral part of our life.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here