Impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on education

Learners affected by school closures caused by COVID-19 as of February 2021
  Full school closures
  Partial school closures
  Academic break
  Online learning
  No school closures
  No data

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected educational systems worldwide, leading to the near-total closures of schools, universities and colleges.

Most governments decided to temporarily close educational institutions in an attempt to reduce the spread of COVID-19.[1] As of 12 January 2021, approximately 825 million learners are currently affected due to school closures in response to the pandemic. According to UNICEF monitoring, 23 countries are currently implementing nationwide closures and 40 are implementing local closures, impacting about 47 percent of the world's student population. 112 countries' schools are currently open.[2]

On 23 March 2020, Cambridge International Examinations (CIE) released a statement announcing the cancellation of Cambridge IGCSE, Cambridge O Level, Cambridge International AS & A Level, Cambridge AICE Diploma, and Cambridge Pre-U examinations for the May/June 2020 series across all countries.[3] International Baccalaureate exams have also been cancelled.[4] In addition, Advanced Placement Exams, SAT administrations, and ACT administrations have been moved online and cancelled.

School closures impact not only students, teachers, and families.[5] but have far-reaching economic and societal consequences.[6][7][8] School closures in response to the pandemic have shed light on various social and economic issues, including student debt,[9] digital learning,[8][10][11] food insecurity,[12] and homelessness,[13][14] as well as access to childcare,[15] health care,[16] housing,[17] internet,[18] and disability services.[19] The impact was more severe for disadvantaged children and their families, causing interrupted learning, compromised nutrition, childcare problems, and consequent economic cost to families who could not work.[20][21]

In response to school closures, UNESCO recommended the use of distance learning programmes and open educational applications and platforms that schools and teachers can use to reach learners remotely and limit the disruption of education.[22] Colleges have scrambled to find creative solutions to teaching students online, in-person but socially distant, or in a hybrid format.[23]

  1. ^ "COVID-19 Educational Disruption and Response". UNESCO. 2020-03-04. Retrieved 2020-05-24.
  2. ^ "COVID-19 Educational Disruption and Response". UNESCO. 2020-03-04. Retrieved 2021-01-12.
  3. ^ "Update from Cambridge International on May/June 2020 exams". Cambridge International Examinations. Retrieved 23 March 2020.
  4. ^ "May 2020 examinations will no longer be held". International Baccalaureate. 23 March 2020. Retrieved 28 March 2020.
  5. ^ Bao, Xue; Qu, Hang; Zhang, Ruixiong; Hogan, Tiffany P. (2020-09-01). "Modeling Reading Ability Gain in Kindergarten Children during COVID-19 School Closures". Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health. 17 (17): 17. doi:10.3390/ijerph17176371. PMC 7504163. PMID 32882960.
  6. ^ "Adverse consequences of school closures". UNESCO. 2020-03-10. Retrieved 2020-03-15.
  7. ^ Lindzon J (2020-03-12). "School closures are starting, and they'll have far-reaching economic impacts". Fast Company. Retrieved 2020-03-22.
  8. ^ a b Aristovnik A, Keržič D, Ravšelj D, Tomaževič N, Umek L (October 2020). "Impacts of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Life of Higher Education Students: A Global Perspective". Sustainability. 12 (20): 8438. doi:10.3390/su12208438.
  9. ^ Jamerson J, Mitchell J (2020-03-20). "Student-Loan Debt Relief Offers Support to an Economy Battered by Coronavirus". Wall Street Journal. ISSN 0099-9660. Retrieved 2020-03-23.
  10. ^ "Distance learning solutions". UNESCO. 2020-03-05. Retrieved 2020-03-23.
  11. ^ Karp P, McGowan M (2020-03-23). "'Clear as mud': schools ask for online learning help as coronavirus policy confusion persists". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2020-03-23.
  12. ^ "Schools Race To Feed Students Amid Coronavirus Closures". NPR.org. Retrieved 2020-03-23.
  13. ^ SESSOMS, BEN. "Homeless students during the coronavirus pandemic: 'We have to make sure they're not forgotten'". Statesville.com. Retrieved 2020-03-23.
  14. ^ Ngumbi, Esther. "Coronavirus closings: Are colleges helping their foreign, homeless and poor students?". USA TODAY. Retrieved 2020-03-23.
  15. ^ "Coronavirus Forces Families to Make Painful Childcare Decisions". Time. Retrieved 2020-03-23.
  16. ^ Feuer W (2020-03-20). "WHO officials warn health systems are 'collapsing' under coronavirus: 'This isn't just a bad flu season'". CNBC. Retrieved 2020-03-23.
  17. ^ Barrett S (2020-03-23). "Coronavirus on campus: College students scramble to solve food insecurity and housing challenges". CNBC. Retrieved 2020-03-23.
  18. ^ Jordan C (2020-03-22). "Coronavirus outbreak shining an even brighter light on internet disparities in rural America". TheHill. Retrieved 2020-03-23.
  19. ^ "Education Dept. Says Disability Laws Shouldn't Get In The Way Of Online Learning". NPR.org. Retrieved 2020-03-23.
  20. ^ "COVID-19 Educational Disruption and Response". UNESCO. 4 March 2020. Retrieved 28 March 2020.
  21. ^ "Coronavirus deprives nearly 300 million students of their schooling: UNESCO". The Telegram. Reuters. Retrieved 11 March 2020.
  22. ^ "290 million students out of school due to COVID-19: UNESCO releases first global numbers and mobilizes response". UNESCO. 4 March 2020. Retrieved 6 March 2020.
  23. ^ Newlin, Timothy (14 January 2021). "How We Navigated a Hybrid Remote Learning Environment Using Wolfram Technology". Wolfram Blog.

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