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91% of student population affected by Covid-19: Report

Prashasti Awasthi Mumbai | Updated on July 13, 2020 Published on July 13, 2020

The study suggested that the poorest and most marginalised children are at risk ― especially from losing out on learning and not returning to the classroom

According to a recent study carried out by Save Our Education, as many as 9.7 million children will see their education getting adversely affected by the novel coronavirus. The NGO called it an “unprecedented education emergency” on Monday.

The study suggested that the poorest and most marginalised children are at risk ― especially from losing out on learning and not returning to the classroom.

The NGO quoted UNESCO data which revealed that around 1.6 billion young people, i.e., 91 per cent of the world’s student population, could not attend schools and universities.

“This emergency comes on top of an existing learning crisis. UNESCO’s most recent projections for Sustainable Development Goal 4 (SDG4) ― a good quality education for every last child ― are dire: they predict almost no progress on reducing the number of children who are out of school by 2030. This equates to millions of children not going to school and not learning. And a generation of children consigned to poorer life chances,” it said in its report.

At the same time, the charity warned the crisis could leave a shortfall of $77 billion in education budgets in low- and middle-income countries by the end of 2021.

It noted that in pre-Covid-19 times, 258 million children were out of school, including 130 million girls. And even when children were at school, many were not learning.

53 per cent of 10-year-olds in low- and middle-income countries are unable to read well; this figure rises to 80 per cent in low-income countries.

The British charity further stated that schools not only provide children with a space to learn, but is also a safe place for them to receive meals, access healthcare, including mental health services, and play with their friends.

“Teachers can be children’s frontline responders and protectors. But with school closures, children are missing out on these essentials the school environment can offer,” it added in its report.

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Published on July 13, 2020
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