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UN report: effect of pandemic leading to crisis in education

POSTED April 12, 2022

UN report: effect of pandemic leading to crisis in education

A look at the impact COVID-19 school closures worldwide

Ghana classroom

The impact of COVID-19 on schoolchildren and their learning is outlined in a recent report from the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF). It warns of the potential for permanent learning losses.

The report, Are Children Really Learning?, details that the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted about 405-million young students worldwide from returning to school full time. There are still more than 20 countries where schools have yet to fully re-open, and there’s concern many of the children could be at risk of choosing to drop out.

“When children are not able to interact with their teachers and their peers directly, their learning suffers,” said Catherine Russell, executive director, UNICEF. “When they are not able to interact with their teachers and peers at all, their learning loss may become permanent.

“This rising inequality in access to learning, means education risks becoming the greatest divider, not the greatest equalizer. When the world fails to educate its children, we all suffer.”

Children who cannot go to class are among the most vulnerable and marginalized youth in society — with the highest likelihood of setbacks in reading, writing or basic math. And, while out of school they are denied access to safeguarding systems, which mean they’re at a higher risk of exploitation and long-term poverty.

Education is at the centre of all we do at Children Believe. As children around the world have been out of the classroom in quarantine, we’ve been working to ensure they keep learning, helping them continue to dream fearlessly.

You can make a difference in the lives of children and youth by giving the gift of education through our Gifts for Good catalogue.

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Children Believe works globally to empower children to dream fearlessly, stand up for what they believe in — and be heard. For 60+ years, we’ve brought together brave young dreamers, caring supporters and partners, and unabashed idealists. Together, we’re driven by a common belief: creating access to education — inside and outside of classrooms — is the most powerful tool children can use to change their world.

About ChildFund Alliance:

A member of ChildFund Alliance, Children Believe is part of a global network of child-focused development organizations working to create opportunities for children and youth, their families and communities. ChildFund helps nearly 23-million children and their families in 70 countries overcome poverty and underlying conditions that prevent children from achieving their full potential. We work to end violence against children; provide expertise in emergencies and disasters to ease the harmful impact on children and their communities; and engage children and youth to create lasting change and elevate their voices in decisions that affect their lives.

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