Preparing for after COVID-19

The legacy of school closures

The consequences of closing schools

After such a long break in schooling, students will return to school with large gaps in their knowledge.

Not all students will have been able to learn at home effectively, and there will be a big difference in learning between students of the same age.

In some cases, students may not even return to school, because their family has come to expect or rely on the income the children have earned while school was closed.

The positive legacy of closures

When schools re-open, you must continue using the remote learning strategies you used during lockdown.

For example, if phone numbers of parents or carers have been collected, this database should still be used to engage with them. Where sign language and subtitling have been introduced to TV programming, they should remain.

An opportunity for reform

Many education systems in low- and middle-income countries were struggling before COVID-19. The closing of schools offers an opportunity to improve things before schools re-open.

Use the time to improve teaching and learning quality. For example, it may be possible to make arrangements for learning resources for all children, such as textbooks and other learning materials, and to plan a national programme to help teachers improve their skills.

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