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65 per cent low, lower-middle income countries slashed education budgets after COVID-19 outbreak: Report

Education budgets had been minimize by 65 per cent of low and lower-middle income countries after the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic whereas solely 33 per cent of excessive and upper-middle income countries did so, in accordance with a report by the (*65*) Bank.

The report, compiled in collaboration with UNESCO’s Global Education Monitoring (GEM) Report, stated the present ranges of presidency spending in low and lower-middle income countries fall wanting these required to attain the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

“In order to understand the short-term impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on education budgets, information was collected for a sample of 29 countries across all regions. The sample represents about 54 per cent of the world’s school and university aged population. The information collected was then verified with World Bank country teams,” the report stated.

“Responding to the COVID-19 crisis requires additional spending to adapt schools for compliance with the necessary measures to control contagion and to fund programs to make up for the losses in learning students experienced while schools were closed,” it added.

The pattern consists of three low-income countries (Afghanistan, Ethiopia, Uganda); 14 lower-middle income countries (Bangladesh, Egypt, India, Kenya, Kyrgyz Republic, Morocco, Myanmar, Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan, Philippines, Tanzania, Ukraine, Uzbekistan); 10 upper-middle income nations (Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Jordan, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Mexico, Peru, Russia, Turkey); and two high-income countries (Chile, Panama).

“The following countries have education shares below 10 per cent and therefore are likely to have other main financing sources besides budget assigned by the central government: Argentina, Brazil, Egypt, India, Myanmar, Nigeria, Pakistan, and Russia,” the report acknowledged.

“It just isn’t clear that countries which have seen a decline of their education price range will have the ability to cowl these prices elevated throughout the pandemic alongside the common will increase in funding wanted to assist rising school-age populations.

“Despite the urgent need for adequate funding to allow school systems to reopen safely, about half of the countries in the sample cut their education budgets. This scarcely bodes well for the future, when macroeconomic conditions are expected to worsen,” it stated.

On the opposite hand, households in low and lower-middle income countries are likely to contribute a higher share of the overall education spending than these in upper-middle and high-income countries, the report identified.

“While data is limited, household education spending as a share of GDP has increased in low-income countries and households still contribute significantly to the costs of education. The pandemic has resulted in a large and negative income and health shock for many households,” it stated.

So far, COVID-19 has contaminated over 11.43 crore individuals throughout the globe and claimed over 25.37 lakh lives.

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