Yunlin Magistrate Chang Li-shan said on Facebook that the county would not switch to distance learning completely like many other parts of the country. The post was later deleted, causing even further confusion among parents.
Some parents in Yunlin County heard that from May 23 to 29, in-person classes will be completely suspended and be replaced by online teaching. Parents can finally breathe a sigh of relief. On the evening of the 19th, Yunlin County Magistrate Chang Li-shan posted on Facebook, saying she will not follow other parts of the country by initiating online teaching for the county, which caused a backlash from parents. She urgently withdrew this decision in the early morning hours of the 20th and announced the county will switch to online teaching.
Parent in Yunlin County: “I would like classes to be suspended. Because of rising COVID cases? Yes, it's too serious.”
Chang Li-shan, Yunlin County Magistrate: “There are still many parents who say they don't have a way to take care of their children. So yesterday (May 19) we thought classes should be both in-person and online to allow parents to make their choice. But I see that many parents still prefer online classes because it's safer.”
The county government stated that although physical classes are suspended, senior high schools and below are still operating normally. If parents cannot watch over their children, they can send them to school where they will be cared for and provided with lunch. However, the eight national public high schools and vocational schools in Yunlin County can decide for themselves whether to switch to online teaching or not.
Chiang Yueh-chi, Principal, National Beigang Senior High School: “Because the Education Administration's original idea was that we were going to. But as of about 5 minutes ago, they notified all principals in the country that they can cooperate with relevant local government's epidemic prevention measures.”
This mix-up didn't just happen at Yunlin County. Some students and parents were dissatisfied because the Education Administration didn't approve to let National Yilan Senior High School switch to online teaching.
Liang Wen-yu, Dean of Affairs, National Yilan Senior High School: “The Education Administration did not agree on the 19th. We cannot rashly implement the switch without their approval. So I told our students we have to wait for the Education Administration's reply. The approval from them only came at midnight last night.”
Yilan Senior High School said it originally wanted to follow the local government's measures on the 19th to switch to online teaching next week. However, this was rejected by the Education Administration. It was not until late at night that the high school received approval for the switch. The high school also urgently issued an announcement in the morning, asking parents to make preparations if needed.