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Toll of Covid-19 on children’s education revealed by Unesco

Education has been interrupted for 363 million students worldwide, according to research.

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A woman walks past with her pet beside an empty public school, in Vitoria, northern Spain (Alvaro Barrientos/AP)

A woman walks past with her pet beside an empty public school, in Vitoria, northern Spain (Alvaro Barrientos/AP)

A woman walks past with her pet beside an empty public school, in Vitoria, northern Spain (Alvaro Barrientos/AP)

Unesco says the Covid-19 outbreak has interrupted schooling for nearly 363 million students worldwide and is urging nations to work harder to make sure affected students are still learning.

That means one in five students are being deprived of education.

The UN education agency has set up an emergency group to help nations implement better remote education practices as the spread of Covid-19 continues to severely impact schools and universities.

On Tuesday, the Paris-based agency held a global video conference of education officials in 72 countries, including 27 education ministers, to share strategy on minimising disruptions due to the epidemic.

The agency has published a list of free learning applications and platforms for use by teachers.

Unesco said 15 countries have ordered nationwide school closures and 14 have implemented localised closures, spanning Asia, Europe, the Middle East and North America.

Greece and North Macedonia on Tuesday announced all schools, universities and kindergartens will be shut for the next 14 days.

PA