As a consequence of the rapid spread of COVID-19, the entire world is suddenly engaged in the biggest distance learning experiment in history. In Latin America and the Caribbean, radio and TV have been the most common technologies used to reach students and deliver education. Technology is a powerful tool, if not the only tool to ensure the continuity of learning during a time of emergency. But technology is not a panacea to all problems education systems encounter. Only a few educational systems have been able to leverage technology to improve learning and better respond to the potential learning loss during the pandemic. No country prepared for this crisis, but some seemed to experience less damage than others. Why? What can other countries learn from them?
This book examines transforming education for the new normal and the systematic changes it requires. It looks at systems in which technology is plugged in as part of a whole. It presents successful cases of Finland, Korea, Uruguay, United States, and Estonia and discusses the enabling factors. The book's chapters illustrate through different experiences and pathways that transforming education is not just about bringing in technology. It is about adopting a new vision and making the systems more flexible and adaptable to new circumstances.
This volume charts five stories in which countries successfully integrated technology into their production functions and transformed their education systems, significantly improving learning outcomes. It is divided into four parts:
Part 1 introduces the case of Finland, where the government aligned their education system with the country’s socioeconomic strategy. Part 2 analyzes how the governments of Korea and Uruguay designed and implemented unique institutional strategies to implement and integrate technology into education. Part 3 explores how education systems can better respond to skill shifts in the labor market. The case on Estonia shows how government emphasized digital skills of all citizens. The case on the United States shows how technology can provide new ways of learning traditional subjects and add content, such as computational thinking, that had not previously been integrated into the curriculum. Part 4 compares countries’ efforts and reforms to respond to the rapid changes in society, integrate technology into education, and provide quality education for all. It provides a checklist of the critical issues reformers will encounter for Policymakers introducing new technologies into the classroom.