Education in normal, new normal, and next normal: Observations from the past, insights from the present and projections for the future.
The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has been more than a crisis; it has been a global wake-up call to change our paradigms and the way we perceive the world.
Not surprisingly, the pandemic has altered the way we interpret the normal as well as the way we live. Normal, by its nature, is a relative term and, presently, we have different derivations of it: Normal, new normal, and next normal.
Nevertheless, it is important to always remember that one’s new normal can be someone else’s normal, or one’s normal could have hitherto been a new normal for someone else. Likewise, normal and new normal for some can be the next normal for others.
These derivations of normal suggest that we are experiencing an unprecedented time, one marked by major shifts in the way we understand and interpret different areas of life, not least of all education, which has and will continue to undergo changes, particularly in the way we teach and learn. With the wide range of written and oral arguments already made on this subject, there is uncertainty surrounding what the future will bring to us, which means that now is the time to ask what is past, what is present, and what is next?
Realizing that the world, and education in particular, as we know them will never be the same, it would be prudent to address some of the most critical issues on the educational landscape by turning our attention to what we have learned from the past and seen in the present and applying our interpretations of them to ensure a solid future. Based on the above considerations, this paper provides possible scenarios to consider for during and after Covid-19 crisis.
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