Anna Slotte, Katarina Rejman, Kirsi Wallinheimo
The aim of this article is to explore a teacher perspective on issues of equity for pupils in online teaching during lockdown in the first period of the COVID-19 pandemic. Using the concepts of horizontal and vertical equity and equal educational opportunities adapted by Maiztegui-Oñate and Santibáñez-Gruber, we study how the changed conditions during online teaching affected issues of equity for pupils and what action the interviewed teachers took that promoted equity in teaching. The data was collected through interviews with twelve teachers in years 5–9, in Swedish-medium schools in Finland, from April to June 2020. Qualitative content analysis was used. The results show that the horizontal equity is robust, although the teachers noticed challenges related to access to teaching, especially in the areas of the changed forms of interaction, increased amount of texts and lack of structures. The teachers took different steps of action in all three areas e.g. emphasising keeping contact with pupils, clear instructions, use of digital affordances, feedback and structure, thus displaying pedagogical autonomy and creativity. By that the teachers promoted equal education for all. The study shows the significance of professional teachers’ work in exceptional circumstances.
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online teaching, horizontal and vertical equity, teacher interviews, COVID-19, classroom interaction
Published in Volume 28(3) Nordic values and schooling during COVID-19: how to balance comprehensive education and sustainable pandemic regulations,