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Rafael Pontuschka

Education Researcher (Innovations)

Rafael joined the UNICEF - Innocenti Research Office in November 2020. He focuses primarily on supporting its research work on COVID and Education with the aim of providing relevant political evidence that is useful to governments during the closing and reopening of schools and beyond, with emphasis on the most vulnerable children. Prior to this current position, he worked at UNICEF Mozambique as the research coordinator consultant for the Longitudinal Assessment of School Dropout in Mozambique. Before UNICEF, he also worked in Mozambique for the London School of Economics with the implementation and impact evaluation of a national program to reduce waiting time in health centers in Mozambique, in partnership with the country's Ministry of Health. He also worked at the Brazilian Ministry of Social Development as the General Evaluation Coordinator, coordinating the team responsible for the analysis and evaluation of the public social policies of the ministry, for example, to evaluate a large-scale government program for early childhood development in Brazil. Rafael has an M.S. in Applied Economics from the University of São Paulo, and a B.A. in Economics from the University of Campinas.

Publications

Reopening with Resilience: Lessons from remote learning during COVID-19 – Eastern and Southern Africa
Publication

Reopening with Resilience: Lessons from remote learning during COVID-19 – Eastern and Southern Africa

The widespread school closures due to the COVID-19 pandemic have exacerbated the learning crisis for children living in Eastern and Southern Africa. The crisis has also shown the great need to develop resilient education systems that can provide learning when schools are forced to close. Understanding how to provide remote learning equitably utilizing multiple modalities and emphasizing low-tech solutions in Eastern and Southern Africa is critical given the great challenges facing the region in terms of electricity and connectivity access. This report provides a summary of lessons learned in the East and Southern Africa region from remote learning during COVID-19 and provides concrete recommendations on how to increase the resilience of education systems.
 What's next? Lessons on education recovery: Findings from a survey of Ministries of Education amid the COVID-19 pandemic
Publication

What's next? Lessons on education recovery: Findings from a survey of Ministries of Education amid the COVID-19 pandemic

United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the World Bank and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) have collaborated in the third round of the Survey on National Education Responses to COVID-19 School Closures, administered by the UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS) and OECD to Ministry of Education officials. The questions covered four levels of education: preprimary, primary, lower secondary and upper secondary. While the first two rounds of the survey were implemented during the periods May–June and July–October 2020, respectively, the third round was implemented during the period February–June 2021. In total, 143 countries responded to the questionnaire. Thirty-one countries submitted responses to the OECD (“OECD survey”) and 112 countries responded to the UIS (“UIS survey”). Seven countries responded to both surveys. In these instances, the more complete set responses were used in analysis.