Survey of COVID-19 impact on national education planning units
Information paper no 66

As the COVID-19 pandemic spreads, most governments around the world have temporarily closed educational institutions in an attempt to contain the spread of the disease. These nationwide closures are not only impacting hundreds of millions of students, they are also affecting the capacity of national education planning units to monitor education outcomes. During these trying times, when countries need data more urgently than ever before to plan and monitor emergency response efforts and prepare for medium- and long-term mitigation and recovery strategies, statistical operations and other office activities are being seriously disrupted or interrupted. The UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS) has therefore launched and conducted a survey of COVID-19 pandemic impacts on national education planning units. The questionnaire is designed for statistical planning units in charge of national education statistics. The survey is available in four languages (English, French, Spanish, and Russian) and can be submitted by email or through the online survey platform. Therefore, the greatest degree of survey participation, integrity, and confidence in the quality of the data are ensured.In light of disruptive challenges due to the progression of the pandemic, the survey has been conducted and collected by education statistics planning units t o ensure that the latest impact and responses are captured. The survey covers a variety of topics to capture the latest impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the operation of education statistics planning units, their responses, and their needs for financial and technical support. It contains four sections: general information on the status of national planning units, statistical operations for school census, monitoring data on schools during the COVID-19 pandemic, frequency of collection, support needs, national COVID-19 pandemic responses, and additional information. The questionnaire was carried out on 15 July 2020 and was completed on 1 October 2020. The survey data covers 129 countries across 9 regions. In terms of regional distribution, we recorded 2 countries from Northern Africa, 34 countries from sub-Saharan Africa, 10 countries from Central and Southern Asia, 11 countries from Eastern and South-eastern Asia, 13 countries from Western Asia, 15 countries from Europe, 32 countries from Latin America and the Caribbean, 1 country from North America and 11 countries from Oceania. In terms of income dispersion of the sample, 24.8% are from high income countries, 30.4% are from upper-middle income countries, 28.8% are from lower-middle income countries and 16% are from low income countries.


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