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Interactive March 24, 2020

World Bank Education and COVID-19


April 3 Guidance Note- principles to maximize countries’ effectiveness in designing and executing remote learning.

Education Systems’ Response to COVID19 - April 3 Brief

Education Systems’ Response to COVID19 - March 27 Brief

Education Systems’ Response to COVID19 - March 24 Brief

March 25 Guidance Note- guidance for World Bank teams helping client countries mitigate adverse impacts of COVID19 pandemic through education-specific responses. It also offers recommendations for government responses that minimize or prevent loss of learning while ensuring safety of all students.

Remote Learning, EdTech & COVID-19 - how the World Bank supports countries on remote learning in the immediate to short term and will help restore learning after the pandemic is over.




Before the outbreak of the global coronavirus pandemic, the world was already dealing with a learning crisis, as evidenced by high numbers of  Learning Poverty.  With the spread of the coronavirus, the education system is facing a new crisis, as more than 160 countries (as of March 24) mandate some form of school closures impacting at least 1.5 billion children and youth.  Extended school closures may cause not only loss of learning in the short term, but also further loss in human capital and diminished economic opportunities over the long term. 

As seen from previous health emergencies, most recently the Ebola outbreaks, the impact on education is likely to be most devastating in countries with already low learning outcomes, high dropout rates, and low resilience to shocks. While school closures seem to present a logical solution to enforcing social distancing within communities, prolonged closures tend to have a disproportionately negative impact on the most vulnerable students.  They have fewer opportunities for learning at home, and their time out of school may present economic burdens for parents who may face challenges finding prolonged childcare, or even adequate food in the absence of school meals.

An empty classroom in India. Photo: © World Bank
An empty classroom in India.

In addition to closing schools, countries are exploring options for remote learning and use of other educational resources to mitigate loss of learning. This involves capitalizing on work already started, and addressing ever-present challenges like degrees of accessibility within communities to ensure equity in access.

The World Bank’s education team is working to support countries as they manage and cope with the crisis today and is advising on remote learning at scale in the immediate to short term as well as supporting operations to facilitate learning after the pandemic is over.  The Bank is also providing ongoing  support to systemic education reform to ensure that when children do return to school, schools can provide the necessary environments to ensure children learn.


April 2: How ministries of education work with mobile operators, telecom providers, ISPs and others to increase access to digital resources during COVID19-driven school closures (Coronavirus)

April 1: High-stakes school exams during COVID-19 (Coronavirus): What is the best approach?

March 31: How countries across Latin America use technology during COVID19-driven school closures

March 30: Educational challenges and opportunities of the COVID-19 pandemic

March 23: Can technology help mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on education systems in Europe and Central Asia?

March 18: Managing the impact of COVID-19 on education systems around the world: How countries are preparing, coping, and planning for recovery

CALL FOR PROPOSALS – April 10 deadline

The Strategic Impact Evaluation Fund (SIEF): Can technology accelerate learning and skills? --- COVID-19 emergency window

Last Updated: Apr 06, 2020