after nineteen months COVID-19 According to the COVID-19 Global Education Recovery Tracker, the pandemic forced school closures around the world, with only half of schools worldwide resuming classroom teaching and learning, while about 34 percent of schools rely on mixed or hybrid instruction modes .
The tracker is jointly created by Johns Hopkins University, the World Bank and UNICEF to assist countries in decision-making by tracking reopening and COVID-19 recovery planning efforts in over 200 countries.
According to tracked statistics, 80 percent of schools worldwide are in regular session. Of those, 54 percent revert to individual instruction, 34 percent rely on mixed or hybrid instruction, while 10 percent continue remote instruction and 2 percent return no instruction.
While the tracker noted that only 53 percent of countries are prioritizing vaccination teachers, the World Bank recommends that countries not wait for their populations or school staff to fully vaccinate before reopening schools. should do.
A report by the World Bank’s education team states, “In order to promote education reform, where possible, teachers should be prioritized for vaccination, while recognizing that vaccinations should be followed through adequate safeguards.” There are ways to safely reopen without.”
“Given that schools reopening around the world have been able to effectively reduce transmission within schools with simple and relatively inexpensive infection control strategies such as masking, ventilation and physical distancing, and given that in most countries Widespread vaccination coverage is not expected. months, closing schools until all staff are vaccinated has little benefit in terms of reduced exposure to vaccination, but potentially generates substantial costs for the children,” it said.
The World Bank has been advocating for the reopening of schools and evaluating the risks associated with prolonged school closures around the world. “In countries that had 36 to 44 new COVID-19 hospitalizations per 1 lakh population per week before reopening, school reopenings did not result in COVID-19 hospitalizations. happened, even after six weeks.
In countries with high hospitalization rates before school reopenings, study results were inconclusive on whether reopening led to an increase in COVID-related hospitalizations.
“Another study took advantage of the difference in start and end dates for summer and fall holidays across Germany and found that neither the summer nor autumn closure caused any significant spill-over of the virus to children or adults. There is no meaningful effect on the effect.
“Similarly, other studies support the argument that transmission in schools generally follows trends in community transmission, rather than precedes or enhances it.”
Last year, the COVID-19 pandemic closed schools in more than 188 countries globally, leaving 1.6 billion children – 75 percent of enrolled students – out of school. “As the COVID-19 pandemic spread to more countries in early 2020, we knew very little about the virus: how it spreads, who would be most affected, and how to treat it.
To protect children and slow disease transmission, most governments responded by closing schools. “A year later, we know a lot more about both the virus and the disease and how to reduce transmission and health officials like the WHO recommend school closures only as a last resort,” it said.
The World Bank, citing evidence of low transmission of COVID-19 among children, said population surveillance studies and contact tracing studies show that young children, especially those under the age of 10, are more likely than adults and adolescents to Children are much less sensitive. There is little chance of contracting COVID-19 and transmitting the disease.
“In children who get COVID-19, serious illness and death are rare and usually occur in children with other underlying diseases,” it said.