The ISO: “Postponing physical education for Hanzehogeschool and University in Groningen is unthinkable”
With the Coronavirus pandemic in the Netherlands far from over, the Dutch government is holding back on confirmation if physical education will be able to take place in the coming weeks. Initially it had been hoped that students may be able to attend classes one day a week from April 26.
The Interurban Student Consultation (ISO) says that any further delay is ‘inconceivable’, following the press conference of outgoing Prime Minister Mark Rutte on Tuesday evening. Inconceivable in the same way as a global pandemic was ‘inconceivable’ just two years ago, presumably. As reported by OOGTV.
According to the ISO, students in the Netherlands were eagerly looking forward to April 26: “being allowed to go to the institution once a week is not a luxury, but it is essential for students who have been following full online education for a year,” says chairman Dahran Çoban. “That is precisely why it is necessary for the cabinet to fulfill its promise, on April 26 the screen student must return to the lecture halls.”
The student organisation has been arguing for some time that online education has a major impact on students, especially in the field of mental well-being. In February, the ISO, in collaboration with ResearchNed, published a study that showed that online education causes an accumulation of social isolation, concentration and motivation problems. As students take more online education, these problems become more pronounced. “Opening up higher education later than April 26 is really not an option. Physical education for students has not been a priority in the Coronavirus policy since the beginning of the crisis, for which students are mentally paying the bill. ”
During the press conference it became clear that a condition for the reopening of higher education is the mass voluntary self-testing of students. The ISO regrets that this condition is imposed, but it also seizes all possibilities for physical education. “If a self-test ensures that you can see your fellow students and lecturers in person again, then I would know. Behind the scenes we see that everyone is ready for physical education. Now we have to wait for the government’s starting signal.”