This year has been a true rollercoaster for the whole world as our “normal” lives got shaken up with a global pandemic that took many lives, restrained us to our homes for months and made us question how strong our public health systems are. Education is one of the heavily-impacted sectors as the whole academic apparatus got shifted online thus bringing the spotlight on online learning. So, while this year has been filled with different kinds of good and bad news that left its own lasting impact on everyone, we need a proper news round-up of 2020 especially in terms of how it altered the educational sphere. An award-winning teacher at Sacromanto’s Lutherbank High School, Larry Ferlazzo has his own tradition of an annual round-up of education news and this year, he published the most crucial best and worst education news of 2020 which got featured in a Washington Post. So, inspired by his post and predictions, here are the worst and best education news of 2020!
Worst Education News of 2020
So, let’s begin with the worst news of 2020 which gave way to the challenges and opportunities to bring out the best in us this year.
- The coronavirus pandemic disrupted the flow of education worldwide and impacted millions of student’s lives. The full-time classes in schools and colleges either got halted or were moved online which further brought many obstacles for both teachers and students across the globe.
- Those students who can’t access proper internet or don’t possess the requisite technology for online learning especially in rural areas have been affected the most this year as they have been left helpless with no education taking place in the meantime.
- The online learning has its advantages but there are also many disadvantages like students not paying proper attention, lack of technology and resources in backward areas and the absence of a holistic system of education. Moreover, due to the lack of student privacy, student abuse often targeted to students of colour has been a major shortcoming of online education.
- Many educational institutions invested their money for hybrid teaching methods. Although this method may be useful in some places but in areas with high infection rates, neither students nor their parents find this to be a feasible option.
- For students planning to study abroad during the first half of the year, several countries paused their visa and immigration process which led students coming out on social media to appeal to the authorities to resume the visa processes.
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Best Education News of 2020
Now that we know some of the worst news of 2020, let’s move ahead and explore the best education news of this year from around the world.
- The flexibility and resilience that our global educators showed this year was commendable. Their efforts to remodel the whole teaching system and carrying out distance learning in such an efficient manner showed the whole world their will to make this world a better place. Though distance learning has not been made possible in many areas of the world but still adapting to distance learning was the best way of making something good out of the worst situation.
- Along with all the teachers, all the parents also did a commendable job guiding their students and acting as their teachers at home, making sure that their children’s education doesn’t get disrupted.
- With online learning altering the classroom atmosphere, students also kept up with the new normal and deserve appreciation from all of us for keeping their calm during these uncertain times and carrying forward with their education. Many students even started part-time or full-time jobs in order to support their families financially along with carrying on with their academic difficulties.
- One great news from this month is that vaccine distribution is about to take place at any time now. Though the approval process and the distribution will take much longer but still, we are a little bit closer towards finishing this pandemic than where we were at the beginning of this year.
- The pandemic sure did wake up our policymakers and made them realise the importance of a flexible education system and its impact on the students and teachers.
- Realising that many test centres are facing the dilemma of conduction standardised exams like GRE, GMAT, SAT and ACT during the pandemic, many universities and business schools exempted the need for these test scores as a requirement for admission which benefited many international students.
- One prominent education news relevant to India was the launch of the New Education Policy which revolutionised our education system and brought a wide range of innovative alterations. On the other hand, Science, Innovation & Tech Policy (STIP) was also brought forward by the country’s government to create a space for initiatives that seek to protect and ensure the diversity of innovation, harness the entrepreneurial potential and steer qualitative change in the lives of the people.
- Even during the ongoing pandemic, many universities around the world found efficient ways to help international students continue their higher studies, be it through letting them opt for online learning or ensuring their safer stay in their chosen country by extending visa relaxations and the like.
Here’s the Silver Lining to Online Learning!
Thus, this was our yearly roundup of the worst and best education news 2020! We hope that the coming year brings us closer to the conclusion of the pandemic and the education systems around the world understand the importance of revolutionising the academic apparatus making it flexible for such unforeseen events! Stay tuned to Leverage Edu for more such informative reads and educational updates from around the world.