A record number of 1.54 billion children and youth have been impacted by the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic, and as of 31st March, 185 countries in Asia, Europe, the Middle East, North America and South America have announced or implemented school and university closures (UNESCO, 2020). In this trying time, there is a pressing need for the education community to come together and maintain a quality education for all.
On a call on April 2nd, 2020 with 150 HundrED Ambassadors, Innovators and community members from over thirty countries representing a wide array of stakeholders and opinions in education, the organisation shared their final Spotlight selections and discussed challenges and opportunities amidst the current crisis. Some major takeaways from a survey taken on the call include
- 87% of the 99 respondents were very concerned (responded between 7 and 10 out of 10) that this pandemic will increase inequality in education.
- Only 6% of the respondents thought their education system was highly prepared for the pandemic.
- 17% of respondents believed their education leaders were learning from other countries’ responses.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has created immediate and unprecedented challenges in education. Excellence and equity, cornerstones of good education systems, are being challenged in every part of the world. Our greatest concern is that differences in parental involvement and access to technology exacerbate inequality. At the same time, as in every major challenge, this is an opportunity to improve.”, says Saku Tuominen, Founder & Creative Director of HundrED.
Over a 7-day open call, we received 102 submissions from educators worldwide offering innovative solutions to challenges raised by the novel Coronavirus. Additionally, our entire team spent over a month researching hundreds of examples - big & small - on how to help children learn in these extreme times.
In a span of ten days, we have been able to document, package and release a collection of 30 simple, yet effective solutions that help parents, teachers and children navigate through the plethora of challenges facing education during the pandemic. The collection showcases big-scale high-quality resources from the likes of Khan Academy, TEDed & Minecraft Education, high-potential innovations like Outschool, Duolingo and Scratch, as well as community-driven bold ideas like #frommywindow and Bear Hunt to virtually connecting with the world with Link Online Learners and Love for the Elderly as well as reaching children and families in remote locations by connecting them with teachers and lessons in other ways than online. The collection includes ideas from the grassroots level to virtual professional development offerings for teachers and school leaders, system-interventions like Politicians Addressing Children as well as public-private partnerships, for example, “Kaikille Kone” or Computers for Everyone in Finland.
We've also released a website and a summary report, Quality Education For All During COVID-19 Crisis, in partnership with the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), expanding on the opportunities and challenges for education during this unprecedented time. From the opportunity for teachers to form much stronger connections with parents, students (especially for students with disabilities) to challenges of untrained teachers and lack of access to digital learning resources, the report has plentiful insights and resources.
Andreas Schleicher (OECD) will join HundrED Special Webinar on global education during Covid-19 on April 7th
As a next step, on Tuesday, 7th April from 1000 to 1045 UTC, we are offering a public webinar with Andreas Schleicher, Director for the Directorate of Education and Skills, OECD on the topic of "Tackling Coronavirus (COVID-19) and Contributing to a Global Effort."
During the webinar, we will explore the work done by OECD in the recent weeks and provide answers to questions like, What are the impacts and consequences of the coronavirus pandemic on our lives and our societies – and what are some of the solutions we can find to boost our education systems, and reimagine the future of education?
To learn more about thirty selected solutions, and read the summary report, check out https://hundred.org/en/collections/quality-education-for-all-during-coronavirus