"My class has been suspended for quite a long time due to COVID- 19. I feel my future will be affected since the authority closed all schools. I wish the corona virus will not reach our country so that I can go back to school”.
12 year old Ishmael Tobia comes from Lambi in the far western end of Guadalcanal.
He is currently selling seashells and trochus at the central market since the closure of his school, Ngalimuata primary school. He is in grade four.
Since the suspension of classes, Ishmael has been left with nothing else but to roam the village with his friends.
"Sometimes I tried my best to read books and study and do my school work. But the pressure from my friends in social activities has influenced me. Though my parents encouraged me to read and study, I am less concerned”, Ishmael said.
He said his mother has continued to encourage him to pursue his studies through his school books at home.
"Apart from my schoolwork, I also helped my farther at home doing small jobs. Diving trochus has become my normal daily activities”.
After selling trochus, Ishmael is thinking of buying learning materials and other accessories to assist him in his education.
This will support him once school resumes.
He said his favorite subject is Mathematics and he dreams of becoming a marine captain. Ishmael said now he is not so sure if he will ever become one, now that his education has been put on hold.
While schools are expected to resume on the 27th April, for Ishmael unfortunately, Guadalcanal is not in the list of schools expected to resume classes.
The Ministry of Education instead announced that teachers will be going on air via the national radio, SIBC every weekday from 10am to 10.30am.
This however is for streams expected to sit their national exams at the end of the year.
For the likes of Ishmael, the only hope for them now in pursuing their education is to wait until government sees it fit that their schools be resumed.