In a report released by UNESCO, as of March 23, 2020, close to 1.3 billion students around the world are unable to attend schools and colleges due to COVID-19. The figures span across the pre-primary, primary, lower-secondary and upper-secondary levels. While in some places the pandemic has altered the way students receive education, a whopping large section of students is shut out of their institutions. An estimated 165 countries are observing nationwide school shutdowns.
The COVID-19 crisis has students solely concentrating on its jolting effects interspersed with temporary home-schooling sessions. Tthe heavily impacted countries under scanner are China, Italy, South Korea and Iran. Applicants awaiting MBA admissions in international colleges are thrown into oblivion regarding about situation returning back to normalcy.
The silver lining lies in innovations that have virtually united 120 million Chinese students through learning materials via television broadcasts. Owing to the fact that only 60% Italian students have access to the internet in Italy, the country had adopted a mixture of TV and internet to amass student attention. The US has fixated on utilizing the centralized government-run media to broadcast educational content across the country. A few countries, like Peru, are focusing on the mental well-being of students to help them excel academically even as the bleak scenario of isolation persists.
UNICEF Reaches Out to Schools
As schools reel under high vulnerability, UNICEF offers active support and cooperation in 145 counties including India to guarantee the continuum of learning.
“Unless we collectively act now to protect children’s education, societies and economies will feel the burden long after we’ve beaten Covid-19. In the most vulnerable communities, the impact will span generations,” commented Robert Jenkins, UNICEF Global Chief of Education.
An initial allocation of $13 million to middle-income countries will be allocated to introduce learning alternatives, improve hygiene and support students’ mental health.