Capturing the Educational and Economic Impacts of School Closures (News and Research 319)

Capturing the Educational and Economic Impacts of School Closures in Poland

The effect of school closures in the spring of 2020 on the math, science, and reading skills of secondary school students in Poland is estimated. The COVID-19-induced school closures lasted 26 weeks in Poland, one of Europe’s longest periods of shutdown. Comparison of the learning outcomes with pre- and post-COVID-19 samples shows that the learning loss was equal to more than one year of study. Assuming a 45-year working life of the total affected population, the economic loss in future student earnings may amount to 7.2 percent of Poland’s gross domestic product.

IZA DP No. 15787: Capturing the Educational and Economic Impacts of School Closures in Poland

Education reforms during and after the war in Ukraine | Martin Kahanec, Snizhana Leu-Severynenko,  Anna Novosad (former Minister of Education), Yegor Stadnyig | Human capital is Ukraine’s most valuable asset today and will continue to be in the future. The education system is key to creating and maintaining this asset. Education will be crucial for Ukraine’s reconstruction because it not only provides the necessary knowledge and enhances human capital, but also brings up good citizens by promoting human rights, integrity and responsibility. Education institutions will also need to deal with psychological trauma of the war, as well as the reintegration of students with multiple vulnerabilities.  The focus on quality also implies changing the structure of incentives (for example, funding universities based on performance rather than on the number of students, as well as introducing more competition and allowing universities more freedom to fundraise) and giving more autonomy and responsibility to educational institutions at all levels. The Ministry of Education should concentrate on policy development, establishing frameworks for quality management and control to ensure accountability to public interest, and training for teachers (professors) as well as financial and managerial staff of educational institutions. There is a clear need to improve the efficiency of public spending on education, for example through merging educational institutions to exploit economies of scale.