World Bank estimates $400 BN loss as schools remain closed in India

World Bank estimates $400 BN loss as schools remain closed in India
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NEW DELHI: The extended shutting down of schools due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic may result in a loss of $400 billion in the country’s succeeding revenue, in addition to significant learning losses, as stated by a World Bank report.

The shutting down of all educational institutions from March 16 due to the nationwide lockdown may not only result in great losses to India but may also decrease the gross domestic product (GDP) of many other countries. In a worst case scenario, South Asia region may lose up to $880 billon due to school closures. According to the report titled “Beaten or Broken? Informality and COVID-19 in South Asia”, South Asia is set to face the worse recession in 2020 due to damaging impacts of the pandemic on economy. It also said that the momentary shut down of schools has kept 391 million students away from formal education, affecting the learning for them greatly. It added that even though the Government of India has made great efforts to reduce the repercussions of school closures, engrossing children through remote learning initiatives has been troublesome.

As per the report, 5.5 million students may drop out from the schools due to the pandemic resulting in considerable learning losses which will adversely affect the productivity of the coming generation. Not attending school for approximately 5 months may result not only in halt of learning new things but also remembering what they have already learned.

The Learning Adjusted Year of Schooling (LAYS), a strategy introduced by the World Bank, has predicted that the continued closure of schools will lead to a learning loss of 0.5 LAYS for India. The system of LAYS helps in projecting the learning gain or loss for students from a particular region.

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