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Views from the Center

CGD experts offer ideas and analysis to improve international development policy. Also check out our Global Health blog and US Development Policy blog.

 

Who Is Going Back to School? A Four-Country Rapid Survey in Ethiopia, India, Nigeria, and Pakistan

To understand the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on re-enrollment for girls and boys, CGD and Malala Fund collaborated to analyze results from a series of rapid surveys that Malala Fund commissioned in Ethiopia, India, Nigeria, and Pakistan. These surveys are among the first (to our knowledge) to elicit children’s self-reported likelihood of going back to school and their experiences during the pandemic.

Chart showing prevalence of private schools in Europe, Africa, Latin America, and South Asia. The other three have far higher private enrollment than Europe, and pre-primary and high secondary have the highest percentages across all.

The Economic Shock of COVID-19 May Hit Private School and Contract Teachers Hardest

While regular public school teachers may be relatively safe from significant wage reductions following COVID-19 in many parts of the world, the structure of the teacher labor market will likely play an important role in the impact of the shock on the education system as a whole. Private schools and contract teachers are a key part of the education workforce in many developing countries and face disproportionate risks of job loss and salary reductions following the pandemic.

Map of social assistance programs during COVID around the world

A Footballer’s Masterclass in Policy Influence

Manchester United footballer Marcus Rashford’s campaign to get the UK government to feed disadvantaged children during the school holidays is a masterclass in campaigning: a single, achievable policy issue, phenomenal use of his platform, backed with good data and an increasingly strong coalition of partners.

Four charts showing that more educated, higher income, and higher skill-level workers are more likely to be accessing distance learning for their kids. The relationship for region isn't as clear.

Three Lessons from a New Phone Survey in Pakistan

After six months of school closures, Pakistan began reopening its schools in a phased manner on September 15. Schools had been shut since March 13, 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. To understand the impacts, CGD partnered with TCF in Pakistan and with CERP to survey households with students in TCF schools on how COVID-19 has affected their children’s education, their livelihoods, and health.

Graph showing learning gain reported across different studies by standard deviation. Most are between .2 and .6 SDs

What Works in Edtech?

Edtech obviously has its limits as a replacement for school during pandemic-response closures. But for governments that do want to invest in edtech, where should they start? In this blog, we focus on the household-based interventions that could be most impactful during the current crisis

A pair of charts showing that poorer students pass school leaving exams at much lower rates than richer peers in many countries, and that exam failure rates are extremely high in many countries

A Case for Abolishing High-stakes Exams—This Year and Every Year

There may be no government response that can fully mitigate COVID-19’s impact and maintain fairness for 2020’s exam candidates. But high-stakes exams are unfair every year, not just during a pandemic: large differences in home support and access to resources are not new. Exams reinforce income inequality, create perverse incentives in the classroom, and limit the number of students who could benefit from more education.

Map of the world showing distance-learning options by country in May 2020, with significantly improved coverage

Six Ways COVID-19 Will Shape the Future of Education

Most of us have been living with closed schools and some version of lockdown for four months now. For all the reimagining of education in the 21st century, nobody predicted that the greatest disruption of all would come from a virus. As education policymakers all over the world grapple with distance learning provision and safe school reopening, they will no doubt also be thinking about what the pandemic means for education in the longer term. We examine six ways COVID-19 is likely to shape the future of education.

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