Updated: Aug 14, 2020
Q: How has the situation changed post lockdown 3 in the area you are responsible for?
Panchayat Elementary Education Officer (PEEO): People have learnt to live with Corona now. They are aware. They know that they have to follow the norms of social distancing. They are taking precautions despite the fact that we are in the green zone. [As on 19 May]
Q: What are teachers telling you with reference to their challenges? What are your challenges?
PEEO: The teachers want those teachers to be appointed to duty now who have not worked before. It is unbelievable that we have still not received the basic things like masks and sanitisers!
The settlements in this village are quite far from each other and people are regularly coming from outside. It is difficult to track these people.
Q: How has children’s school education been impacted in your area?
PEEO: There has been a huge impact on children’s education. Government has started the ‘Smile Project’ as per which we send educational material on the WhatsApp group of parents. Parents and children are also free to ask doubts on that group.
However, there are very few people in this village who have mobile phones and access to the internet. Even if they have access, they are not aware enough to supervise their child’s education. The government has also started a radio programme called ‘Shikshavani’.
Q: How has your work changed with the lifting up of the lockdown and easing of restrictions? Is your primary focus still on COVID-19 tasks or are you back to routine work?
PEEO: With the easing of lockdown and restrictions, my work has increased. Since markets have opened up now, people tend to be less careful. So, my efforts towards stopping the spread of the virus have only increased.
The interview was conducted with a Panchayat Elementary Education Officer (PEEO) in Rajasthan in Hindi on 19 May 2020, and has been translated.