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UNICEF Survey : 77 Million children depleted out of class for 18 months

UNICEF

Recently the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) conducted a survey regarding the impact of Covid-19 on the lives of school-going children which showed nearly 77 million children have been shut out of classrooms for the past 18 months. Unicer called out the situation as an ”Educational Crisis”.

The agency also made a statement that it will be closing down its social media channels for the next 18 hours to send one message to the world: #ReopenSchools for in-person learning as soon as possible, UN News reported.

“117 million students, representing 7,5% of the total student population, are still affected by complete school closures in 18 countries. The number of countries with partly open schools has declined from 52 to 41 over the same period. Schools have remained closed for a total period of 18 months in five countries, accounting for 77 million students,” UNICEF said in a statement.

In all countries having experienced prolonged full school closures, education was provided through a combination of online classes, printed modules, as well as TV and radio lessons.

“For UNICEF, the right to go to school is central to every child’s development, safety, and well-being. Yet in too many countries, classrooms remain closed while social gatherings continue to take place in restaurants, salons, and gyms,” the UN agency said. It further added that “this generation of children and youth, cannot afford any more disruptions to their education.”

New numbers from UNESCO, released this Thursday, show that schools are now fully open in 117 countries, with 539 million students back in classrooms, ranging from pre-primary to secondary levels.

This represents 35 percent of the total student population across the world, compared to 16 percent who returned to school in September 2020, when schools were only open, or partially open, in 94 countries.

UNESCO and its other partners have been advocating for the safe reopening of schools, urging full closures to be used as a measure of last resort. The agency said the past two academic years have resulted in learning losses and an increased dropout rate.
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