SEATTLE, Washington — The global COVID-19 pandemic has affected how each country views and implements programs involving education. Due to the closure of schools worldwide, many communities are scrambling to figure out how to educate their youth. Some countries are able to implement online learning but others are not. For pupils who live in underserved or impoverished communities, the pandemic has brought about challenges that set back their education. Without a doubt, COVID-19 is changing views on education all around the world.
Impact of COVID-19 on Education
When the COVID-19 pandemic required schools to shut down, 1.6 billion students in 190 different countries were affected. The pandemic has made world leaders think about how to protect their communities and ensure education can still continue. COVID-19 has resulted in changing views on education. Exploring how COVID-19 has affected education in Japan, India, Africa and the U.K. will allow for different perspectives on how to solve this crisis. Each country has its unique difficulties in educating their communities and ensuring education for their youth.
The country of Japan has been able to create an online learning platform for students. The Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, has created a resource website for COVID-19 procedures. The primary form of education Japan has implemented is online learning. Although online learning is being used to educate Japan’s students, initiatives are put in place to ensure maximum usage of school grounds and facilities in a safe manner.
Online learning is a primary resource for India by using various avenues to bring beneficial education to students. The Ministry of Human Resource Development has provided free e-learning tools for students. The different platforms for online learning in India are The DISHKA, e-Pathshala, Swayam and Swayam Prabha. All these online learning platforms provide a variety of courses on multiple subjects. Also, these programs are geared toward providing quality education for students. Another resource is provided by The National Repository of Open Educational Resources (NROER), where students and teachers can interact and books and courses are offered in multiple languages. The NROER also has a curriculum for STEM that is geared toward grades one to 12.
During the pandemic, many African governments considered decreasing funding for education. Although cutting funds to the educational sector could benefit other areas during the pandemic, not allowing for learning could have dramatic effects. Education is an essential resource to help strengthen any government and enable children to have a better future. Since technological barriers exist with regards to online education in Africa, some countries in Africa are providing interactive radio instruction as a method of continuing education. Additionally, Malawi’s education ministry is working with organizations to deliver effective literacy and numeracy instruction via solar-powered offline tablets.
In the United Kingdom, there are guidelines for children to receive an education during this uncertain time. On the government website, residents can discover resources regarding support and the procedures for children in schools. The website offers educational resources for different age groups so parents can continue their child’s education at home. The government of the United Kingdom also recognizes the importance of having good mental health during this time. With this in mind, the website also provides resources for caring for a child’s mental health and wellbeing while teaching from home.
COVID-19 has presented each country with obstacles on how to educate their children best. Countries have come up with innovative ideas to ensure that education continues, showing how COVID-19 is changing views on education.
– Brooke Young