The rising number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Senegal forced the country to take drastic measures to curb the spread of the epidemic. The closure of all schools in the country on March 16, 2020 brought new challenges to the education sector.
Grappling with unprecedented challenges
The interruption of in-person instruction and the continuation of schoolwork at home has been difficult for the 3.5 million pre-primary to high school students who were previously attending the country's 16,235 schools.
Without specific measures put in place in quickly, the suspension of related school services (including some health services and meals) and support for the most vulnerable students risked making these students even more vulnerable as a result of the negative impact of the school closures on their immediate and future well-being.
The government's response
To ensure continuity of learning, the government of Senegal launched a planning and response effort that focuses not only on health, but also on social and economic needs.
Public authorities, health and social services, technical and financial partners (including GPE), and the business community have been involved in this inclusive, participatory, and multisectoral approach, which led to the Ministry of Education's launch of the "Learning at Home" program.