Junior secondary students return to school after Covid-19 suspension

  • Many Primary Four to Form Two students say they are excited to return to the classroom after four months of online lessons due to the coronavirus pandemic
  • They worry about exams, and teachers expressed concern over social distancing measures 
Joanne Ma |

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While senior secondary students returned to class on May 27, junior secondary and upper primary will only resume on Monday.

Most junior secondary school students are looking forward to returning to school today after a four-month break. Primary Four to Form Two classes resume on Monday.

The Education Bureau said in a statement last Friday that the situation relating to the coronavirus outbreak in Hong Kong and the number of confirmed cases has been stable since late April. 

But there is concern again with a cluster of local cases reported recently. This is because of 10 cases of infection involving the staff of a warehouse and residents of Lek Yuen Estate in Sha Tin.

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While schools planned to reopen as scheduled, the bureau urged them to remain vigilant and check everyone’s temperatures before they enter the campus.

Many students were excited about going back to school. Queenie Lo Hei-yiu, a 14-year-old student at St Paul’s Secondary School, says she is happy because she can finally see her classmates again.

“But I am nervous about how I did with my homework … there is a lot of work that’s due, including projects like creating a drawstring bag,” she says.

She adds that she is stressed about the final exam that will take place in two weeks’ time. 

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“The exams weigh a lot in terms of my overall grades,” she says. Her biggest concerns are Chinese and Integrated Science, the two subjects that she felt she was weak at.

Cadence Kwok, a student at Marymount Secondary School, says she may find it difficult to adjust to regular classes after having Zoom lessons for such a long period of time. 

“I’m worried about not being able to catch up, and the stress that it will bring,” the 14-year-old says. 
“And I’m not really looking forward to school because I didn’t finish all my homework.”

Although she is thrilled to see her friends again, she feels anxious about maths and Chinese classes because a lot of tests will be coming up.

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Nathan Wong Nok-yin of Evangel College is also happy to see his classmates. “I haven’t seen my friends for a long time and I really miss them,” the 12-year-old student says. “Getting my report card [and knowing how I did last term] also makes me happy.” 

Cherry Chung, a primary schoolteacher on Hong Kong Island, is worried about social distancing measures and hygiene. She is also concerned that students will be going through different emotions. 

“Some might be grumpy or have difficulty focusing in class. They also have to adapt to the school environment again,” she says. 

Her school has set up an automatic temperature check machine at the entrance, and all students will sit in single rows in the classrooms. More staff will be assigned to monitor the students’ interaction.