Educational challenges during Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

COVID-19 pandemic has grave repercussions for the entire world. We are fighting with Coronavirus day-in, day-out, together… because that’s the only way to beat it. Today, coronavirus outbreak is the major threat in front of us. It not only threatens our living but also has a bad impact on our economy as a whole. It impacted every individual; be it a child, a youngster or an adult. It has come in front as the greatest threat to humankind and global education.

In times when our education system is already failing us, we have bigger problems to face now. Coronavirus has caused a gigantic educational crisis.

“As of March 28, 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic is causing more than 1.6 billion children and youth to be out of school in 161 countries.”, which is almost 80% of the world’s enrolled children, according to the World Bank Education.

According to a report of The World Bank, the % of children who cannot read and understand at age 10 – stood at 53% of children in low and middle-income countries. These stats were taken into account before the outbreak started.

Surely, the outburst of this pandemic has worsened the situation and what’s more disheartening is that we still can’t focus towards this major issue, because health comes first.

The major issues, we should be worried about in the present are –

  1. Closing of schools
  2. Delay in conducting exams as per schedule
  3. Losses in learning
  4. Increased dropout rates
  5. Children missing their meal

These impacts might be felt disproportionately by children in different countries. But it will be nearly alike for poor children in every country because when it rains, it pours for them.

Now, that we know the major pain points of global education crisis that cries for our attention and help. It becomes indispensable to take the necessary actions without delay. It’s now or never.

Taking a toddler to school is one of the most satisfying moments in my many years in public life. There is no better joy than laying the foundations of a strong future for these little children. Let us all become partners in this quest for ensuring education for all!

- Shri Narendra Modi

Small steps that can help in combating the global education crisis-

  1. Introduction of eLearning
  2. Online examination
  3. Introduction of extra skill enhancing courses in curriculum
  4. Feeding the hungry initiative in association with the government

Introduction of eLearning

With the coronavirus forcing schools to close and prohibition of group gatherings anywhere, many solutions and measures are discovered to get hold of the situation. Any interruption in the schooling disrupts the lives of many children, their parents, and teachers. As a consequence remote learning is introduced. Remote learning strategies are already implemented in developed countries but for developing countries, it’s a challenge. Internet connectivity, a laptop/computer and a desk etc., are some pre-requisites to establish online learning.

India has taken initiatives to expedite the internet-based eco-system, but still there are a few villages unfamiliar with the benefits of internet causing amplification in the egregious inequality of opportunities. Children from better-off families can use facilities like e-Learning, download lectures on their smartphones and get in touch with their teachers through WhatsApp, text messages which require less data usage. Luckily, many education ministries are working restlessly to empower poor children with similar facilities.

Introduction of extra skill enhancing courses in curriculum

Dropout rates are still very high in many countries because they can’t see the benefit of going school. Secondary education is not about learning mathematical formulas or doing scientific research; it’s about understanding, how be a part of a civilized society? It’s about developing social skills and having a better understanding to identify the difference between what’s real and false. We need to introduce skills enhancing courses to the students in the time of need.

Feeding the hungry initiative in association with the government

Coronavirus has impacted the poor in ways no one can imagine. It snatched food, education, shelter and all other monetary benefits from the poor.  The gov. is taking many initiatives to serve the poor. We should join hands with them and serve the poor in these bad times for the sake of humanity. Together we grow, together we prosper.

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