Don’t let education be a victim
Needless to say, the Covid-19 crisis is unlike anything the modern world has encountered before -- in both its proportions and adverse impact.
It has wreaked havoc across nearly all aspects of daily life, overwhelmed health sectors, and created dangerously destabilized economies across the globe.
Another area that continues to leave in distress is education.
With social distancing measures in place and lockdowns still effective in numerous countries, education had momentarily come to a near standstill, before creaking back to functionality as institutions introduced online learning in order to stay on track.
But is this enough?
Unesco’s Global Education Monitoring (GEM) report estimates that the recession following Covid-19 is likely to set aid to education back by six years -- something we cannot afford to let happen. Additionally, Audrey Azoulay, director-general of Unesco, has said that it is imperative we prioritize funding education now more than ever before.
In addition to aid, education must also be given due importance in domestic budgetary allocations if we are to prevent setting back SDG 4, which is a global education goal. It is important to acknowledge that, as a result of being an unprecedented catastrophe, the initial response to it, while inadequate, was understandable.
However, as time goes by and the situation either worsens or plateaus, we must look to developing innovative solutions to counteract the primary effects of the pandemic.
This will include further polishing online education systems, as well as redesigning many existing plans and policies to better fit the current situation. And to implement these innovative policies that come up in the future, the role of ample funding will be unparalleled.
The threat to education is grave, and this pandemic is as much a crisis of education as it is a health care or economic crisis. We must treat it as such.