The Covid pandemic has been a difficult time for teachers, as has Siti Supaidah, S.Pd. a teacher at SDN Sukokerto 1 in Probolinggo. As a Special Assistance Teacher for students with special needs who attend SDN Sukokerto 1, Supaidah is used to interacting with them directly and studying together in school. However, during the pandemic, it was not possible to do so, especially when Probolinggo regency was in the red zone.
“Since Probolinggo district was declared a red zone, practically all students are not allowed to go to school. At first I tried to do online learning using zoom app but it turned out that this online activity did not produce good results. Most parents of learners do not have android-based phones that have zoom applications. Even if students can use the zoom application, students will never be able to concentrate on listening to the teacher’s instructions so that the learning event using zoom was difficult,” complained Supaidah.
After discussing with the principal and fellow special assistance teachers, finally the teachers who accompany the students with special needs decided to continue to carry out mentoring directly to the students’ homes even though not every day.
“Together with other special assistance teachers, I shared the visiting point area to carry out offline learning. We make a weekly visit to the student’s house or gather in the nearest mosque from the student’s house where 4-5 students can come to the mosque to study,” Supaidah explained.
After carrying out offline learning, Supaidah realized that almost all students with special needs experienced a decrease in learning ability. This can be concluded from the Students’ Learning Profile (PBS) received by students at the beginning of school academic year before the pandemic.
“PBS is very useful because by looking at the PBS results sheet, I and other teachers can assess pandemic conditions as students’ learning abilities are now decreasing compared to before the pandemic, and the decrease is measurable,” said Siti Supaidah. For example, there used to be one of the students who could get to know alphabet but now he has forgotten because of lack of training at home.
In addition to carrying out offline learning, Supaidah also provides assistance to parents so that they are more painstaking and patient to accompany their children at home. The assignment given by Supaidah to the students is also emphasized on life skills such as learning to sweep, clean the yard, wash dishes, cook and so on so that parents have no difficulty accompanying their children.
In addition, there are also collaboration assignments between students and parents such as making portable sinks from buckets or used paint containers installed with faucets. This activity is carried out jointly between the students and their parents at home. Furthermore, Supaidah asked students to get used to washing their hands in each of their activities every day to maintain health.
Supaidah hopes that this pandemic will end soon, so that students with special needs can return to learning as they always have.