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The state of education one year into the COVID pandemic

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In 2020, 1.5 billion students in 188 countries/economies were locked out of their schools.

Students everywhere have been faced with schools that are open one day and closed the next, causing massive disruption to their learning.

With the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic still raging, many education systems are still struggling, and the situation is constantly evolving.

The OECD – in collaboration with UNESCO, UNICEF and The World Bank – has been monitoring the situation across countries and collecting data on how each system is responding to the crisis, from school closures and remote learning, to teacher vaccination and gradual returns to in-class instruction.

Andreas Schleicher, OECD Director for Education and Skills, presents the findings of the survey of around 30 different education systems and their responses to the pandemic, looking at how strategies varied across countries, whether or not certain strategies were favoured, and what the impact of these strategies was.

Read the report: https://www.oecd.org/education/state-of-school-education-one-year-into-COVID.htm

In 2020, 1.5 billion students in 188 countries/economies were locked out of their schools.

Students everywhere have been faced with schools that are open one day and closed the next, causing massive disruption to their learning.

With the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic still raging, many education systems are still struggling, and the situation is constantly evolving.

The OECD – in collaboration with UNESCO, UNICEF and The World Bank – has been monitoring the situation across countries and collecting data on how each system is responding to the crisis, from school closures and remote learning, to teacher vaccination and gradual returns to in-class instruction.

Andreas Schleicher, OECD Director for Education and Skills, presents the findings of the survey of around 30 different education systems and their responses to the pandemic, looking at how strategies varied across countries, whether or not certain strategies were favoured, and what the impact of these strategies was.

Read the report: https://www.oecd.org/education/state-of-school-education-one-year-into-COVID.htm

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The state of education one year into the COVID pandemic

  1. 1. The state of school education – one year into the Covid pandemic Andreas Schleicher
  2. 2. Lost opportunity
  3. 3. Number of instruction days where schools were fully closed in 2020 (excluding school holidays, public holidays and weekends) 1. Most typical number of instruction days 2. Minimum number of instruction days. Source: OECD/UIS/UNESCO/UNICEF/WB Special Survey on Covid. March 2021 Figure 1.2
  4. 4. Quality of learning outcomes and instructional days lost Source: OECD/UIS/UNESCO/UNICEF/WB Special Survey on Covid. March 2021 [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELL… [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] Belgium Russian Federation Turkey R² = 0.5411 0 20 40 60 80 100 120 140 160 180 200 400 420 440 460 480 500 520 540 Number of instruction days where upper secondary schools were fully closed in 2020 PISA 2018 performance in reading (remains 0.31 after accounting for GDP/capita)
  5. 5. Quality of learning outcomes and instructional days lost Source: OECD/UIS/UNESCO/UNICEF/WB Special Survey on Covid. March 2021 [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELL… [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] [CELLRANGE] Belgium Russian Federation Turkey R² = 0.5411 0 20 40 60 80 100 120 140 160 180 200 400 420 440 460 480 500 520 540 Number of instruction days where upper secondary schools were fully closed in 2020 PISA 2018 performance in reading Size of bubbles represents number of COVID-19 cases per million inhabitants in 2020 (remains 0.31 after accounting for GDP/capita)
  6. 6. Ongoing school closures
  7. 7. Status of school opening (as of 1 February 2021) 1. School were closed as of 1st February in some sub-national regions in these countries/economies due to regular school calendar. Source: OECD/UIS/UNESCO/UNICEF/WB Special Survey on Covid. March 2021 Figure 1.1
  8. 8. Consequences of school closures
  9. 9. Adjustments to school calendar and curriculum (primary education) Source: OECD/UIS/UNESCO/UNICEF/WB Special Survey on Covid. March 2021 Figure 1.4
  10. 10. Steps taken to assess learning losses as a result of COVID related school closures Source: OECD/UIS/UNESCO/UNICEF/WB Special Survey on Covid. March 2021 Number of countries Countries Students were assessed in a standardized way (at the sub-national or national level) 7 DEU,DNK,EST,FRA,ITA, NLD,NOR There is no plan to assess students in a standardized way 10 CHL,ESP,FIN,HUN,KOR,NOR, NZL,RUS,SVK,SWE Students were not yet assessed but there is a plan to assess them in a standardized way 9 AUT,BFL,COL,GBR,ISR, JPN,LTU,NLD,TUR Students were assessed at the classroom level (formative assessment by teachers) 19 AUT,BFL,BFR,CHE,CHL,CRI, CZE,DNK,ESP,EST,FRA,ISR,JPN,LTU,LV A,NLD,NOR,PRT,RUS Table 4.2 Primary education
  11. 11. Distance learning solutions
  12. 12. Distance-learning solutions offered during 2020 and/or 2021 Source: OECD/UIS/UNESCO/UNICEF/WB Special Survey on Covid. March 2021 Figure 2.1 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100 Online platforms Take-home packages Television Mobile phones Radio Other distance learning modality % of countries/economies Primary Lower secondary Upper secondary, general 34% of countries used 3 or fewer instruments 56% of countries used 4 or 5 instruments 19% used all instruments
  13. 13. Inclusion of populations at risk in distance learning
  14. 14. Measures targeting populations at risk of exclusion from distance education platforms Source: OECD/UIS/UNESCO/UNICEF/WB Special Survey on Covid. March 2021 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 Design of learning materials for speakers of minority languages Special efforts to make online learning more accessible to migrant and displaced children, including those in camps Additional support to lower-income households, including economic support (i.e. take-home rations, cash based transfers) Agreements with Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) operators/Internet firms to remove the internet access barrier Improved access to infrastructure for learners in urban high-density areas Support to learners with disabilities (e.g. sign language in online learning programmes) Improved access to infrastructure for learners in remote areas Flexible and self-paced platforms (Asynchronous learning platforms) Subsidized devices for access (PCs or/and tablets) % of countries Upper secondary, general Lower secondary Primary Figure 2.2 Well prepared Local initiative
  15. 15. Mitigating health risks
  16. 16. Strategies for the re-opening of primary schools after the first period of closures Source: OECD/UIS/UNESCO/UNICEF/WB Special Survey on Covid. March 2021 Figure 3.1
  17. 17. Protecting teachers
  18. 18. Measures for the prioritisation of teachers’ vaccination, at the pre-primary to upper secondary levels (as of March 2021) Source: OECD/UIS/UNESCO/UNICEF/WB Special Survey on Covid. March 2021 Countries with national measures prioritising teachers’ vaccination Countries where teachers are subject to the same vaccination schedule as the general population, or where teachers’ vaccination schedule has not been defined yet Number of countries List of countries Number of countries List of countries 19 Austria, Chile, Colombia, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Portugal, the Russian Federation, the Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Spain and Turkey 11 Belgium, Costa Rica, Denmark, England, Finland, France, Japan, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and Switzerland Table 3.1
  19. 19. Percentage of countries reporting that the following criteria were used to prioritise vaccination among teachers (pre-primary to upper-secondary levels) Source: OECD/UIS/UNESCO/UNICEF/WB Special Survey on Covid. March 2021 Figure 3.2
  20. 20. Support of students and schools
  21. 21. Strategies to address learning gaps when upper secondary general schools re-opened after the first closure in 2020 Source: OECD/UIS/UNESCO/UNICEF/WB Special Survey on Covid. March 2021 Figure 3.3 Only 40% of countries implemented measures to support vocational schools
  22. 22. Outreach and support to students at risk
  23. 23. Outreach to encourage the return of vulnerable populations to school Source: OECD/UIS/UNESCO/UNICEF/WB Special Survey on Covid. March 2021 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% Other None Provision of financial incentives or waived fees Reviewing/revising access policies Community engagement to encourage return to school Make modifications to ensure water, hygiene, and sanitation services are accessible School-based mechanisms to track those not returning to school Share of countries Refugees/migrants/ displaced children Other populations at risk Ethnic Minorities/speakers of minority languages Children with disabilities Figure 3.4 Costa Rica, Estonia, Poland, Portugal, Hungary, Spain and Turkey provided financial incentives such as cash, food or transport or waived school fees to disadvantaged students
  24. 24. Examinations and assessments
  25. 25. Graduation ratios for students in the last year of upper secondary general education (2019 and 2020) Source: OECD/UIS/UNESCO/UNICEF/WB Special Survey on Covid. March 2021 Figure 4.1
  26. 26. Changes to 2019-20 national examinations due to the pandemic? (Upper secondary, general education) Source: OECD/UIS/UNESCO/UNICEF/WB Special Survey on Covid. March 2021 Changes N Countries Introduced additional health and safety measures (e.g., extra space between desks for distancing students) 21 Austria, Belgium (Flemish), Belgium (French), Chile, Colombia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Israel, Italy, Lithuania, Latvia, Poland, Portugal, Russian Federation, Slovenia, Spain, Turkey Adjusted the content of the Examinations (e.g., subjects covered or number of questions) 10 Austria, Chile, Spain, Israel, Italy, Latvia, Poland, Portugal, Russian Federation, Turkey Adjusted the mode of administration (e.g., computer-based or online- based) 5 Belgium (Flemish), Colombia, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania Postponed/rescheduled the Examinations 17 Austria, Chile, Colombia, Czech Republic, Germany, Spain, Estonia, Finland, Israel, Korea, Latvia, Lithuania, New Zealand, Poland, Portugal, Slovenia, Turkey Cancelled the examinations and used an alternative approach for high- stakes decision making (e.g., calculated grades) 9 Belgium (French), Denmark, Estonia, France, Hungary, Israel, Netherlands, Norway, Slovak Republic Introduced alternative assessment/validation of learning (e.g. appraisal of student learning portfolio) 8 Costa Rica, France, Israel, Latvia, Netherlands, New Zealand, Poland, Russian Federation Figure 4.1
  27. 27. Sustaining learning
  28. 28. Proportion of teachers who were required to teach (remotely/online) during all school closures in 2020 Source: OECD/UIS/UNESCO/UNICEF/WB Special Survey on Covid. March 2021 Figure 5.1
  29. 29. Changes to staff policies and recruitment practices Source: OECD/UIS/UNESCO/UNICEF/WB Special Survey on Covid. March 2021 Figure 5.2 Lower secondary education
  30. 30. Maintaining contact with students and parents
  31. 31. Percentage of countries that encouraged interactions between teachers and their students and/or their parents during school closures in 2020 Source: OECD/UIS/UNESCO/UNICEF/WB Special Survey on Covid. March 2021 Figure 5.3 Lower secondary education
  32. 32. Percentage of interactions (among the 10 types) between teachers and their students and/or their parents that were encouraged during school closures in 2020 (lower secondary education) Source: OECD/UIS/UNESCO/UNICEF/WB Special Survey on Covid. March 2021 Figure 5.3 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100 Hungary Norway Germany Estonia Israel Italy Colombia Korea Slovak Republic Costa Rica Slovenia Russian Federation Chile Portugal Turkey Japan Czech Republic Latvia Austria Lithuania France New-Zealand Belgium (French) Ireland Belgium (Flemish) Poland % Interactions encouraged Schools could decide at their own discretion Interactions not encouraged
  33. 33. Supporting teachers
  34. 34. Support for teachers in their transition to remote learning in 2020 Source: OECD/UIS/UNESCO/UNICEF/WB Special Survey on Covid. March 2021 Figure 5.4
  35. 35. Support for teachers’ professional learning to help teachers prepare for more effective use of ICT tools and remote/hybrid teaching Source: OECD/UIS/UNESCO/UNICEF/WB Special Survey on Covid. March 2021 Figure 5.6
  36. 36. Financing
  37. 37. Current and planned increases/decreases in educational investment (primary and secondary education) 1) In Japan school year 2019/2020 begins in April 2019 and ends in March 2020 and school year 2020/2021 begins in April 2020 and ends in March 2021. Source: OECD/UIS/UNESCO/UNICEF/WB Special Survey on Covid. March 2021 Public expenditure in school year 2019/2020 Public expenditure in school year 2020/2021 Increases Belgium (Flemish community), Belgium (French community), Colombia, England, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Israel, Italy, Japan1, Latvia, Lithuania, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, Russian Federation 65% Austria, Belgium (Flemish community), Belgium (French community), Canada, Colombia, Czech Republic, England, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Israel, Japan1, Latvia, Lithuania, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, Russian Federation 71% No changes Austria, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, Czech Republic, Hungary, Ireland 21% Costa Rica, Hungary, Slovak Republic 9% Don't know Denmark, Korea, New Zealand, Poland, Switzerland 15% Chile, Denmark, Italy, Korea, New Zealand, Poland, Switzerland 21% Total 34 34 Table 6.1
  38. 38. Current and planned increases/decreases in educational investment (primary and secondary education) 1) In Japan school year 2019/2020 begins in April 2019 and ends in March 2020 and school year 2020/2021 begins in April 2020 and ends in March 2021. Source: OECD/UIS/UNESCO/UNICEF/WB Special Survey on Covid. March 2021 Public expenditure in school year 2019/2020 Public expenditure in school year 2020/2021 Increases Belgium (Flemish community), Belgium (French community), Colombia, England, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Israel, Italy, Japan1, Latvia, Lithuania, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, Russian Federation 65% Austria, Belgium (Flemish community), Belgium (French community), Canada, Colombia, Czech Republic, England, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Israel, Japan1, Latvia, Lithuania, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, Russian Federation 71% No changes Austria, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, Czech Republic, Hungary, Ireland 21% Costa Rica, Hungary, Slovak Republic 9% Don't know Denmark, Korea, New Zealand, Poland, Switzerland 15% Chile, Denmark, Italy, Korea, New Zealand, Poland, Switzerland 21% Total 34 34 Table 6.1
  39. 39. Percentage of countries allocating additional public funds/resources to primary and secondary schools in response the pandemic in 2020 or/and in 2021, by criteria Source: OECD/UIS/UNESCO/UNICEF/WB Special Survey on Covid. March 2021 Figure 6.2
  40. 40. Who decides?
  41. 41. Distribution of decision-making responsibilities (primary and lower secondary education) Source: OECD/UIS/UNESCO/UNICEF/WB Special Survey on Covid. March 2021 Figure 7.1
  42. 42. Find out more about our work at www.oecd.org/education Email: Andreas.Schleicher@OECD.org Twitter: SchleicherOECD Wechat: AndreasSchleicher and remember: Without data, you are just another person with an opinion Thank you

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