With schools closed, Cambodian students turn to Facebook to stay in touch

In a bid to limit the spread of coronavirus, schools across Cambodia were ordered to close their doors last week.

The Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport (MoEYS)  has taken the initiative to leverage online platforms such as Facebook to provide free lessons for high school students.

In a video posted on MoEYS Facebook page on Sunday, Minister of Education, Youth and Sports Hang Chuon Naron instructed parents and guardians to seek additional sources of knowledge for students.

“To ensure that students remain active with their education, the Ministry would like to encourage parents and guardians to prepare appropriate learning environment for students and seek additional studying materials to textbooks as published by the ministry. They can also find additional learning materials online through channels such as YouTube, Facebook as well as the Ministry’s website,” said Mr. Chuon Naron.

Since Monday last week, the Ministry’s Facebook page has been broadcasting live lessons, giving students across the country a chance to stay up to date with their studies.

The online courses are available for all, but are mainly from the grade 9 to 12 curriculum, as students in those grades are scheduled to be taking exams later this year.

A daily schedule of available lessons is being published on the Ministry’s Facebook page.

Streaming live on the Ministry’s Facebook page on Thursday, Professor Thou Phorn, of the Royal University of Phnom Penh gave a 40 minute Physics class, which received 112K views within the day along with many supportive reactions and comments from students who followed the lesson  (screenshot below).

One Facebook user Svay Sok Sonthy commented “I strongly support this online learning initiative. Thank you.” while Ray Roeum said simply “So cool teacher.”

Another Facebook user Khorn Dalen tagged her friend Le Seyha reminding her in a comment, “Time to study now.”

Student and Facebook user Seyha Chan, commented encouragement “Let us learn together,” although some frustration at the school lockdown was clear in Sreyroth Vuthy’s comment “It would be much better to see actual experiment”.

Students can also ask the teacher questions by posting comments below the live video.

Professor Thou Phorn, of the Royal University of Phnom Penh giving a High School Physics class on the Cambodian Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports Facebook page on Thursday (March 19)

Professor Thou Phorn, of the Royal University of Phnom Penh giving a High School Physics class on the Cambodian Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports Facebook page on Thursday (March 19)