Even before COVID-19 hit, the world was experiencing a global learning crisis: 90% of children in low-income countries could not read and understand a simple sentence by their 10th birthday. In Nigeria, three-quarters of primary teachers could not pass a fourth grade test.
The onset of COVID-19 is exacerbating this: at its peak, the pandemic pushed 1.6 billion children out of school. 8 out of 10 children surveyed in 46 countries reported that they have learnt very little or not at all since COVID-19 began. This lost potential is catastrophic, not just for individuals, but for future economies and generations. The cost of lost potential from lack of learning is equivalent to US$129 billion per year or 10% of global spending on education.
To avoid turning the global learning crisis into a catastrophe, investment in education is necessary. But COVID-19 is threatening a deprioritization of education in budgets, and the