Over 1.5 billion children worldwide have been impacted by COVID-19 school closures. And it’s even worse for the most marginalized, like children living through conflict and crisis. Malala estimates that “20 million more secondary school-aged girls could be out of school after the crisis has passed."
In addition to providing children with critical resources to thrive and create a more sustainable, equitable, and prosperous world, taking away school also means taking away safe places where children can play with friends, and have meals and access health services, including services for their mental health. Teachers are often front-line responders and protectors for children who might suffer from abuse at home. With school closures, these safeguards fall away.
In times of crisis, education is often the first thing to go – if we don’t act now, it will happen again. That’s why leaders must not fail future generations but commit to restoring the lives and the futures of children affected by disasters by ensuring they continue to have access to safe, free, and quality education.
Take the quiz to see what you know about the impact of the crisis on education for children around the world.