The COVID-19 pandemic has led to the biggest disruption to education that the world has ever seen. At its height, 9 out of 10 students in the world were out of school, and today 1.2 billion students are affected.
More than 80% of them are in developing countries, where school closures are compounding an already urgent learning crisis.
These unprecedented disruptions will have immediate consequences for children’s learning and their well being. The brunt of the impacts, as with most crises, will be borne by those who are already most in need of education.
The longer schools remain closed, the greater the damage will be. And the worst may be yet to come. The latest projections are that the pandemic will cause a global economic contraction of 3%. (By comparison, the global financial crisis of 2008-2009 resulted in a contraction of 0.1%.)
This will have a significant impact on education spending, especially in developing countries.
We were poised for a decade of delivery to accelerate our shared commitment to SDG 4. If we don’t act now to safeguard financing for education, there is a very real risk that we will fall even further behind.