Tag Archive for: Coronavirus

From Bhutan with love, a poem for doctors from all over the world

I follow the news with a heavy heart. I see images of health workers, care-givers, and people in the front-lines and pay my tributes to their courage and sacrifices.
Here is a little tribute to the medical personnel and the brave-hearts around the world.

TS Powdyel

Thank you forever…

Did you ever think…

This would come?

No, no one ever did.

Hippocrates was no diviner

No, not Florence Nightingale either…

This is all you were told:

Life is sacred: Life is precious

Preserve it… honour it… celebrate it…

This is what you hold in your hand today.

But the scourge is all over:

It is here, there

It has exploded everywhere.

And there you are…

Right in the eye of the storm!

Today, you are not a doctor…

No, nor a nurse…

You’re life unto life

Yes, precious life

Unto precious life

Your vital role dissolves with its precious soul today…

When you go in today

Wrapped in your multi-layered PPE

Tight from head to toe

A single thought reigns supreme in your mind:

These lives are in my hand

No matter what lies beyond…

Thank you for the precious lives you save everyday

Putting selfless service before your own dear self


Thank you for the hunger and the thirst you put aside

And the mask-scars and the heart-aches that will abide

Even as the pressing call of nature you put on hold…

Thank you forever… God bless you evermore…

We see you take your fight to the end

Till you know you cannot bear it anymore…

We see your drained-out colleague drop on the floor

And cry with you for the battles forever lost.

Heart-broken today for the lives that the virus cost…

Hold on, Doctor… heal on, Sister…

Forge on every front-line hero…

And the brave-hearts behind you…

This battle must be fought and won

And Life has to go on…


Thank you for the world…

And, thank you for Life…

The sun will rise again…

Thank you forever…

God bless you evermore…

Covid-19 crisis and the Life-Principle of Learning

As a teacher, I believe that the first principle of education is the affirmation and celebration of life. Life is precious and every bit worth preserving and honouring. Little wonder, here is the emphatic command of the King Himself on behalf of Life, Milu Rinpoche: ‘Not a single life should be lost to coronavirus’.

The whole world is coming around!

All our teaching and learning will go only so far and no further if this basic principle of education is missing. As unusual as the current situation is, it may provide a welcome opportunity to re-discover the fundamental goal of education – that is Sherig – meaning ‘deep learning’. We will then be able to locate the core purpose of education as it ought to be.

The scourge of the coronavirus has forced education systems around the world to find alternative ways of teaching the students and engaging them meaningfully during these uncertain periods of home-stay while at the same time hoping to ‘cover the sacrosanct syllabus’!

The Ministry of Education has formulated versatile plans and our fellow-teachers are making valiant efforts to marshal technology to reach out to their students. All this is as it ought to be in the given ongoing situation. And, the results, I would like to believe, must match the inputs.

In the unlikely event that current public security interventions warrant extension, an additional option could require the students to explore diverse and original formats to represent their previous year’s or semester’s learning and submit credible samples of work for assessment at the end of the designated period.

Knowledge is power but how knowledge is internalised and represented is success.

This alternative would provide greater diversity in learning and in representing what is learnt, free learning from undue dependence on expensive gadgets especially in disadvantaged areas, relieve teachers to focus on more purposeful support and monitoring, and build greater integrity in learning.

Above all, such alternatives would emphasise depth over breadth, insights over information, quality over quantity, education over qualification, among other advantages.

The intent of Every Village a School: Every Home a Classroom, and Educating for Gross National Happiness initiatives was to pave the way for learning blessed with integrity.

For now though, precious Life is absolute Priority Number 1.

We are all in it together… in our efforts, in prayers, in our hope…

Thakur S Powdyel
Former Minister of Education in Bhutan, Starter of Green School in Bhutan

Coronavirus and EE. Situation, proposals, perspectives: the debate is open

Environmental Education is in quarantine too.
What are we learning from this crisis? What is the impact of the Covid-19 emergency on several activities? And how can environmental education help address this and other crises? What are the best practices for continuing to do environmental education using the Internet and e-learning? Is it necessary for schools and universities to be more focused on social and ecological sustainability? What are the prospects for the future? What are we going to do when the emergency is over, and the fear has passed? Will everything come back as before? What will have changed for the better or for the worse? Is there a risk in the future of a further reduction in the funds available for environmental education and the Green New Deal?

The WEEC Network opens the debate on these and other questions, to try to better understand the situation of environmental education in all countries in the days of Coronavirus.

Send us news, comments, stories, proposals. We will publish them on the WEEC network website.

Coronavirus Covid-19 Crisis: EE is a fundamental tool to build resilience

The world environmental education network (WEEC) is close to everyone in these long months who are experiencing painful moments and a situation of social isolation all over the world.

For teachers at schools and universities, the pandemic means that they have to give up their relationship with millions of young students. Online courses are a remedy that cannot replace the educational relationship, and there is a digital divide that increases the disadvantage of people living in socio-economic conditions, thus creating even greater educational poverty.

Measures to tackle the infection also deprive young people and adults of the opportunity to go outdoors, go to natural parks, take advantage of museums, theatres, libraries and other educational opportunities.

For environmental education, all this is a heavy brake: the Coronavirus crisis paralyses all environmental education activities.

At the same time, today the environmental education also has a more significant task. The origin of the pandemic and its impacts, which mainly affect people weakened by a polluted environment and unhealthy lifestyles, remind everyone of the importance of restoring the balance of the planet upset by global warming and the destruction of Nature.

Environmental education has a pivotal role and is a crucial tool to build resilience in the face of disasters and catastrophes, natural or made by humans.