The COVID-19 pandemic has shaken long-accepted beliefs about education, showing that learning can occur anywhere, at any time, and that education systems are not too heavy to move. When surveyed in May 2020, only around one-fifth of OECD education systems aimed to reinstate the status quo. Policy makers must therefore maintain the momentum of collective emergency action to drive education into a new and better normal. This Handbook provides practical guidance to support them to do just that. It presents the current state-of-play in over 40 education systems, and efforts to improve pedagogical practices in the midst of the pandemic. It proposes three key lessons and related policy pointers for the current academic term and beyond. Drawing on concrete examples of COVID-19 policy responses from primary to tertiary, as well as impactful pre-crisis policies, it addresses the policy areas of flexible learning, educator skills, and student equity. The Handbook has been prepared with evidence from the Education Policy Outlook series – the OECD’s analytical observatory of education policy. As such, it benefits from a decade of policy analysis, outcomes from the Education Policy Reform Dialogues 2020, and the development of an actionable Framework for Responsiveness and Resilience in education.
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