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Children and COVID-19 Research Library

UNICEF Innocenti's curated library of COVID-19 + Children research

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Rapid retooling and adaptation of EIE data processes and programming: Pashe Achhi Model in early childhood education in emergencies in the Rohingya camps of Bangladesh

In March 2020, after the coronavirus cases in Bangladesh were confirmed, both Humanitarian Play Labs (HPL) and mainstream Play Labs temporarily stopped their face-to-face operations according to the government mandate. The pandemic endangered people’s physical health and highly impacted their socio-economic and mental health conditions. Hence, BRAC explored alternative approaches and designed a telecommunication model, Pashe Achhi, to support all the direct beneficiaries during the pandemic. The objective of the intervention was to be connected with the beneficiaries and promote children’s wellbeing and development through play-based learning, positive parenting, and self-care practices of caregivers. Since caregivers are the core agent for children’s learning and development during the pandemic, the model provides psychosocial support and learning support to them. To facilitate the calls, the model trained facilitators on ECD, learning through play, playfulness, and mental health. Pashe Achhi is a telecommunication model consisting of tele-counseling and tele-learning components. After receiving the training, the Play Leaders started to call the families every week to conduct a 20 minutes phone session (10 minutes with the mother and 10 minutes with the child) based on the scripts delivered. In the first 10 minutes, Play Leaders give mothers and caregivers basic psychosocial support, tips on engaging with children and discuss health and hygiene issues.

Closing the gap 2: delivering safe and sustainable solutions for girls’ education in crises

AUTHOR(S)
Ruth Naylor

Institution: Inter-Agency Network for Education in Emergencies
Published: May 2022

This paper summarizes the findings of the monitoring report: Mind the Gap 2: Seeking Safe and Sustainable Solutions for Girls’ Education in Crises, which was commissioned by the Inter-agency Network for Education in Emergencies (INEE) in collaboration with the INEE Reference Group on Girls’ Education in Emergencies. It recommends actions for governments, donors, civil society, collectors and collators of data, and teachers and other education personnel to address the gaps identified in the delivery, planning, funding, and monitoring of girls’ and women’s education in crisis contexts.

Mind the gap 2: seeking safe and sustainable solutions for girls’ education in crises
Institution: Inter-Agency Network for Education in Emergencies
Published: May 2022

This report summarizes progress, gaps, challenges and opportunities in improving education and training for girls and women affected by conflict and crisis. This report monitors progress since the first Mind the Gap report and highlights the following thematic areas: distance education and the digital divide, school-related gender-based violence, and girls’ education during climate crisis.  The report aims to support the Charlevoix Declaration on Quality Education’s commitment to enhance the evidence base and monitor progress toward gender-equitable education in crises. The report draws from data on 44 crisis-affected countries, from recent research, and from a set of case studies of interventions in a range of crisis-affected contexts.

Girls’ education and women’s equality: how to get more out of the world’s most promising investment

AUTHOR(S)
Shelby Carvalho; David Evans

Institution: Center for Global Development
Published: May 2022

To hear talk of it, you might think educating girls is a silver bullet to solve all the world’s ills. A large and still growing collection of research demonstrates the wide-ranging benefits of girls’ education. Recent research has nuanced some of those findings, but the fundamental result stands: Educating girls is good for girls and good for the people around them. This report goes beyond what works to get girls in school and learning—still very important questions—to probe how education can work together with other societal systems and structures to provide better lifetime opportunities for women.

Re-imagining the future of education management information systems: ways forward to transform education data systems to support inclusive, quality learning for all
Institution: UNESCO
Published: May 2022

Several factors are contributing to the ongoing evolution of Education Management Information Systems (EMIS). These include increasing digitization of education sector management and education delivery, the accompanying generation of large volumes of data, including about the learning process itself,and the availability of technologies for their analysis (big data analytics), as well as real-time. The pandemic-induced shift to distance learning and the post-pandemic new normal of hybrid learning modalities accelerated the influence of these factors on EMIS systems. In light of thesechanges, it is important to re-formulate the expectation that a modern EMIS should not only serve as a tool for national statistical reporting but rather as a tool to support digitized administrative management at all levels through the provision of timely and actionable information services, and that, furthermore, it should not only support administrative management but also directly  support learning management, including within hybrid and blended learning modalities. This paper, and the discussions during the second International EMIS Conference, stressed that to implement a modern EMIS, it will be important for policy makers to create the necessary (i) legal, policy and institutional frameworks, specifying key EMIS and data governance processes and providing sustained funding commitments to support a multi-year process, (ii) invest in upgrading and sustaining the technological infrastructure, and to (iii) heavily invest in human capacity building.The paper also explores the potential contributions that frontier technologies such as Artificial Intelligence and Blockchain can make to future EMISs and discusses the role of a community of practice as well as guiding principles for the further evolution of EMISs.

 

An analysis of COVID-19 student learning loss

AUTHOR(S)
Harry Patrinos; Anthony Vegas; Emiliana Carter-Rau (et al.)

Institution: The World Bank
Published: May 2022
COVID-19 caused significant disruption to the global education system. Early reviews of the first wave of lockdowns and school closures suggested significant learning loss in a few countries. A more recent and thorough analysis of recorded learning loss evidence documented since the beginning of the school closures between March 2020 and March 2022 finds even more evidence of learning loss. Most studies observed increases in inequality where certain demographics of students experienced more significant learning losses than others. But there are also outliers, countries that managed to limit the amount of loss. This review aims to consolidate all the available evidence and documents the empirical findings. Thirty-six robust studies were identified, the majority of which find learning losses on average amounting to 0.17 of a standard deviation, equivalent to roughly a one-half year’s worth of learning. These findings confirm that learning loss is real and significant, even compared to the first year of the pandemic. Further work is needed to increase the quantity of studies produced, and to ascertain the reasons for learning loss and in a few cases mitigation of loss.
School is closed: simulating the long-term impact of the COVID-19 pandemic–related school disruptions in Kuwait

AUTHOR(S)
Simon Bilo; Mohamed Ihsan Ajwad; Ebtesam AlAnsari (et al.)

Institution: The World Bank
Published: May 2022

The schooling disruption caused by COVID-19 in Kuwait is among the longest in the world. Using the similarities between the schooling disruptions due to the Gulf War and the schooling disruption due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this note shows that students in school during the COVID-19 pandemic face significant reductions in the present value of their lifetime income. Furthermore, the findings show that students in higher grades during the pandemic are likely to face larger reductions in lifetime earnings than students in lower grades. Kuwaiti females in secondary school who will become civil service workers face a reduction of close to $40,000. The corresponding reduction for males is more than $70,000.

Let Us Learn: Making education work for the most vulnerable in Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Liberia, Madagascar and Nepal

AUTHOR(S)
Marco Valenza; Thomas Dreesen

Institution: *UNICEF
Published: May 2022

Learning remains largely out of reach for many of the most vulnerable children around the world. In low- and middle-income countries, an estimated 56% of children cannot read a simple text by the age of 10. This share is projected to rise to 70% after the pandemic. The school closures imposed by the COVID-19 outbreak, coupled with an enduring tendency in low-income countries to allocate a limited share of the national education budget to the most vulnerable, are further widening inequalities in the global learning crisis landscape. The Let Us Learn (LUL) initiative implements innovative education programmes to improve learning for the most vulnerable children in five countries with high levels of out-of-school children: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Liberia, Madagascar and Nepal. This report documents the outcomes, lessons learned and recommendations based on the experience of the initiative across four types of learning programmes spanning the education lifecycle: (1) pre-primary education; (2) accelerated learning pathways; (3) programmes to reduce barriers to access and stay in formal school; and (4) vocational training.

A lost generation: perpetual education insecurity among the Rohingya

AUTHOR(S)
Robin E. Al-Haddad; Kendra L. Duran; Saleh Ahmed

Published: May 2022   Journal: Race Ethnicity and Education
Education security exists when every child has equal access to quality education. Rohingya refugee children suffer widespread rates of education insecurity both in their home country, Myanmar and in their host country, Bangladesh. While the right to education is recognized in several human rights instruments, access to education is not ubiquitous, making the ability to achieve this right challenging for many Rohingya. Government restrictions on accredited education, COVID-19 related school closures, failures in launching a pilot of the Myanmar curriculum, and recent government plans to relocate refugees to Bhasan Char Island have created a ‘lost generation’ of Rohingya youth. This study traces the development of education insecurity among the Rohingya, a stateless ethnic minority group who fled to Bangladesh in 2017 in response to ethnic violence in Myanmar. Drawing upon available literature and primary fieldwork, this study examines the social, cultural, and political determinants of learning opportunities for Rohingya children.
The impact of the corona virus 2019 on education: Challenges related to distance learning for children of the preparatory classes (5–6 year-olds)

AUTHOR(S)
Gentiana Shahini; Tringa Azizi

Published: May 2022   Journal: Policy Futures in Education
The implementation of preventive measures against the spread of COVID-19 in Kosovo resulted in the closure of educational institutions for all levels of education. The transitioning process from face-to-face to virtual or online classes’ format was also coordinated for pre-school children, enabling their development at home. The research aims to shed light on the problems, needs, and difficulties the children of preparatory classes, their parents, and teachers face since the implementation of distance learning measures. For completing this survey, a qualitative research design was used. The empirical research was carried out through discussion in focus groups and semi-structured interviews.
Three parameters of urban K-8 education during pre- and post-Covid-19 restrictions: comparison of students of slums, tin-sheds, and flats in Bangladesh

AUTHOR(S)
Gazi Mahabubul Alam; Morsheda Parvin (et al.)

Published: May 2022   Journal: Education and Urban Society
According to a proverb often referring to the misery that prevails in restricted if enlightened surroundings, “It is dark under the lamp.” Urban areas have emerged as centers of excellence as far as economic development is concerned. People coming from diverse cultural, professional, and economic backgrounds live in cities. Gaps their economic conditions have led to various clusters of people much different from their rural counterparts. Comparing between urban and rural areas, studies often argued that urban education is exceptionally better. Adopting “descriptive analysis” of both secondary and primary data, this study notes that students living in urban slums suffer in terms of three parameters (access, attendance, and academic performance) of K-8 education. Government-run education neglects students living in the slums and this enabled NGOs to step in. Students living in tin-sheds receive education mainly through the government’s initiatives, while those living in flats attend private, international, and elite-public schools. Students who live in tin-sheds cannot compete with those who live in flats, let alone the slums. The Covid-19 pandemic has further aggravated this crisis. Substantial policy intervention by the government may be the only viable way to ensure developing nations’ K-8 urban education is safe from criticism.
Children's Covid-19 writing and drawings and the existential imperative to educate for uncertainty

AUTHOR(S)
Perpetua Kirby; Michela Villani; Rebecca Webb

Published: May 2022   Journal: Children & Society
The Covid-19 pandemic provokes a pedagogic crisis: education is ill-adapted to accommodate multiple uncertainties in students' lives. This study examines how pandemic uncertainty is registered in a global collection of writing and drawing from 4 to 17-years-old, during the 2020 lockdowns. The study engages with Biesta's (2021) philosophical work on 'world-centred education', offering empirical examples from the collection that goes beyond the immediacy of everyday lives. It identifies educational implications: acknowledging students' present experiences of the world; a slowing of pedagogical tempo; supporting students to navigate desires and fears; a language for expressing uncertainty; and engaging students in ethical and existential difficulty.
Re-imaging everyday routines and educational aspirations under COVID-19 lockdown: narratives of urban middle-class children in Punjab, India

AUTHOR(S)
Ravinder Barn; Damanjit Sandhu; Utsa Mukherjee

Published: May 2022   Journal: Children & Society
Based on in-depth interviews with 24 middle-class Indian child participants, this is the first exploratory qualitative study, in India, to demonstrate the ways in which children as reflexive social actors re-negotiated everyday schedules, drew on classed resources at their disposal and made sense of the impact of the pandemic on their educational pathways and future aspirations. These narratives offer a unique lens on the politics of middle-classness and its constitutive relation to constructions of normative childhoods in contemporary India. Study findings contribute to the sociology of Indian childhood and more generally help enrich our understanding of southern childhoods and the reproduction of inequalities in contemporary India.
COVID-19’s impact on learning losses and learning inequality in Colombia

AUTHOR(S)
Emiliana Vegas

Institution: The Brookings Institute
Published: April 2022

This brief focuses on Colombia, which, like most countries globally, closed its schools in March of 2020. As throughout most of Latin America, Colombian schools remained closed for over a year, and they only began to gradually reopen in July 2021. This study explores the pandemic’s impact on student learning by analyzing trends in student achievement in national assessments from 2015 to 2019 and comparing them with student achievement in the same national assessments carried out in 2020 and 2021. It also explores the extent to which students in subnational territories (ETCs)—the equivalent to U.S. states, except some are certified by the national government to have more autonomy in spending than others—with different lengths of school closure periods experienced varying levels of learning losses.

High school students’ social jetlag, lifelong competency, and academic stress during the COVID-19 pandemic: a cross-sectional study

AUTHOR(S)
Soo Yeon Lee; Sun Joo Jang

Published: April 2022   Journal: The Journal of school nursing
With the prolongation of non-ordinary situations such as school closures due to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, high school students have experienced irregular sleep-wake cycles and elevated academic stress resulting from reduced academic achievement and widened gaps in academic performance. This cross-sectional study aimed to investigate the associations among chronotype, social jetlag, lifelong learning competency, and academic stress in high school students during the COVID-19 pandemic. Data were collected through an online survey from May–June 2021.
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UNICEF Innocenti's Children and COVID-19 Library is a database collecting research from around the world on COVID-19 and its impacts on children and adolescents.

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COVID-19 & Children: Rapid Research Response

UNICEF Innocenti is mobilizing a rapid research response in line with UNICEF’s global response to the COVID-19 crisis. The initiatives we’ve begun will provide the broad range of evidence needed to inform our work to scale up rapid assessment, develop urgent mitigating strategies in programming and advocacy, and preparation of interventions to respond to the medium and longer-term consequences of the COVID-19 crisis. The research projects cover a rapid review of evidence, education analysis, and social and economic policies.