UNESCO: More than 100 million children lack basic reading skills because of COVID-19

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) warned that the percent of children who are experiencing reading difficulties has become to 20% due to school closures imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to the UN News website, a new study released on Friday by the UNESCO revealed that more than 100 million children, are falling behind the minimum proficiency level in reading, due to COVID-related school closures. 

The study, titled “One year into COVID: Prioritizing education recovery to avoid a generational catastrophe”, said that even before the pandemic the number of children lacking basic reading skills was on a downward curve. 

In 2020, instead of 460 million children experiencing reading difficulties, that number jumped to 584 million. The rise of more than 20 per cent, wiped out two decades of education gains, the agency said. 

Since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, complete or partial closures have disrupted schooling for an average of 25 weeks, says the report, with the highest learning losses projected to be in the Latin America and Caribbean region, and in Central and Southern Asia.

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Source: UN News