Wednesday, 30 September 2020 on 4:36pm

SEAMEO Journal 2020 Special Issue on “Maximising Learning: Education Responses during COVID-19 Crisis and Beyond”


As the pandemic is still on-going globally and has created such a “New Normal” ways of life, all the education stakeholders must evolve and support each other to adapt to the situation. In correspondence to Priority Area No. 2 “Addressing Barriers to Inclusion” and Priority Area No.3 “Disaster Risk Management” of the Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Organization (SEAMEO), it is essential for SEAMEO to act and publish the best practice responses and innovation to enhance access to education and mitigate the impacts of the education during emergency time toward students and teachers.

The recommendation for best practices documentation development was also stated both in joint-statement in SEAMEO Ministerial Policy e-Forum on COVID-19 Response1 and the High Officials Meeting Recommendations on Advancing School Safety and Resilience in the Southeast Asian region2 (Bohol Statement), which was developed during the 8th Annual Forum for High Officials of Basic Education of SEAMEO Member Countries and Associate Member Countries 20-23 August 2019.

To gain insights of the learning situation and youth well-being in the region at the initial stage, the survey was conducted by SEAMEO Secretariat to portray the impacts of the pandemic on Southeast Asian youth (15-25 years). Majority of the respondents at 36.96% reported that they were facing challenges and difficulties on education and career. Apart from the fear of health and life, 56.95% of the respondents reported a lack of resources (e.g. Wi-Fi, digital equipment). Moreover, a high number of respondents at 65% expressed their needs of support for Access to education/ classes via online learning platforms and others, which is only second to the need for health care supplies and safety equipment. 3It could be concluded from the survey that Southeast Asian youths have experienced learning difficulties and expressed the needs of learning support.

Building on the surveyed information, the further question to be addressed is how education stakeholders have responded to the disruption and fulfilled the educational needs of students and what are best practices that have already been implemented in the region.

As a result, SEAMEO deems it is necessary to call for papers to develop the documentation to capture best practices from schools all over the world, which could be used to assist the operations and collaborations of schools and education stakeholders to a smooth transition to “New Normal” education.

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