The Education Crisis (News and Research 195)
The COVID-19 cost of school closures | Projected Future Earnings Losses on Students and the Economy | … assuming that every additional year of schooling equates to 10 percent in additional future earnings. We then use the number of months of education closures to estimate the loss in marginal future earnings. For example, if Country X closes its schools and universities for four months, the loss in marginal future earnings would be 2.5 percent per year over a student’s working life. We apply this assumption to the world’s largest economy, the United States of America and its 76 million students, as our starting point. We model on a 45-year working life, a discount rate of 3 percent, and mean annual earnings of $53,490. This quick estimate suggests lost earnings of $1,337 per year per student: a present value loss of earnings of $33,464 (63 percent of a year’s salary at current average wage rates). While this may not sound like too much of an individual price for young people to pay in the fight against COVID-19, a look at the impact on the whole of the country is much more sobering. In this model, the cost to the United States in future earnings of four months of lost education is $2.5 trillion—12.7 percent of annual GDP. And with well over half the country’s states deciding to keep schools and universities closed until the fall at the earliest, much of this loss may well materialize. Extrapolating to the global level, on the basis that the U.S. economy represents about one-quarter of global output, these data suggest the world could lose as much as $10 trillion over the coming generation as a result of school closures today.
World Bank Blog: The COVID-19 cost of school closures
COVID-19’s immense impact on equity in tertiary education | Roberta Malee Bassett, Nina Arnhold | As the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has spread across the globe, it has hit hardest in many of the global centers of tertiary education. Emerging tertiary education powerhouses China and South Korea were among those affected first. Within weeks, however, the virus was global, and every continent and nearly every country had to react. The immediate actions were roughly the same at world-class universities, technical colleges, and all forms of tertiary education provision in between: shut down campuses; send students home; deliver instruction remotely, where possible; accept a lost academic term where remote delivery is not possible. In few countries was the tertiary education sector able to respond by utilizing a well-informed, already prepared playbook for rapid closure of its physical plant. So, today, the world finds 99% of all formally enrolled students in tertiary education affected. In effect, these students are serving as part of a global experiment, with a wide variety of modalities being tried (with differing levels of effectiveness and quality) for continued provision of their tertiary education…
The kids are not all right | When easing lockdowns, governments should open schools first | The costs of keeping them closed are too high | Covid-19 has shut the world’s schools. Three in four children live in countries where all classrooms are closed. The disruption is unprecedented. Unless it ends soon, its effect on young minds could be devastating…
The OECD’s Coronavirus special edition: Back to school refers to Tigran’s work:
School Year Really Ended in March | Abrupt closings have stalled the learning of millions of students. U.S. education needs a rescue, an economist says, and it won’t be cheap.
The famous Lancet article on school closures: “School closure and management practices during coronavirus outbreaks including COVID-19: a rapid systematic review”
Impact of non-pharmaceutical interventions against COVID-19 in Europe: a quasi-experimental study: “…closure of education facilities, prohibiting mass gatherings and closure of some non-essential businesses were associated with reduced incidence…”
Science: Changes in contact patterns shape the dynamics of the COVID-19 outbreak in China: “…While proactive school closures cannot interrupt transmission on their own, they can reduce peak incidence by 40-60% and delay the epidemic”
Lancet: Epidemiology and transmission of COVID-19 in 391 cases and 1286 of their close contacts in Shenzhen, China: a retrospective cohort study: “…children were as likely to be infected as adults…”
This new study from Germany: An analysis of SARS-CoV-2 viral load by patient age: “… Analysis of variance of viral loads in patients of different age categories found no significant difference between any pair of age categories including children. In particular, these data indicate that viral loads in the very young do not differ significantly from those of adults. Based on these results, we have to caution against an unlimited re-opening of schools and kindergartens in the present situation. Children may be as infectious as adults.”