The COVID-19 pandemic has upended education around the world, shuttering school doors and leaving millions of children without formal access to learning. The global closure of schools is shedding renewed light on inequities that existed prior to COVID-19 and that threaten to further widen the learning gaps within and between countries.
While much attention has focused on reopening schools, the COVID-19 crisis presents a leapfrog moment to transform key elements of education systems, putting schools at the heart of social and economic recovery. New approaches by educators, parents, and even entire school systems to use education technology and other innovations are spreading across communities and bringing learning opportunities to disadvantaged young people. Given that COVID-19 is unlikely to be the last large-scale school disruption, it is imperative to build a more resilient education ecosystem, so that learning can continue when in-person instruction might not be possible. At this critical moment, it is now more important than ever to invest in innovations such as education technology and leapfrog progress—both during COVID-19 and beyond.
On September 14, the Center for Universal Education (CUE) hosted a webinar to discuss strategies, including around the effective use of education technology, for ensuring resilient schools in the long term and to launch a new education technology playbook “Realizing the promise: How can education technology improve learning for all?”
George Papandreou, former prime minister of Greece, provided opening remarks highlighting the important role of education in the recovery. Rebecca Winthrop, co-director of CUE, moderated a panel discussion on strategies for building resilient education systems with the current Minister of Education of Sierra Leone David Sengeh, Save the Children CEO Kevin Watkins, and NGO leader from Rajasthan, India and CUE Nonresident Scholar Urvashi Sahni.
Emiliana Vegas shared CUE’s newest ed-tech playbook, an evidence-based tool to help ministries of education realize the potential of education technology, leading into a discussion with the playbook co-authors, Alejandro Ganimian and Frederick Hess, moderated by CBS journalist Jearlyn Steele.
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Presentation & Discussion: Realizing the promise: How can education technology improve learning for all?
Panel: Strategies for building resilient education systems
PanelistThe Hon. Minister David Sengeh Minister of Education and Chief Innovation Officer - Government of Sierra Leone, Chief Innovation Officer - Directorate of Science, Technology and Innovation in Sierra Leone
Discussion: Realizing the promise: How can education technology improve learning for all?