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Libya scales up distance learning amid pandemic

from AHMED ZAYED in Tripoli, Libya
TRIPOLI – GOVERNMENT and humanitarian agencies have adopted technology to scale up distance learning by school children following the disruptions and challenges the coronavirus (COVID-19) have brought about in Libya.

The Ministry of Education of Libya and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) announced the initiative.

The new programme developed by education experts at UNICEF and the ministry focuses on supporting the education platforms established for distance learning and the provision of technical supplies such as computers and tablets and internet connectivity.

It also focuses on capacity building of teachers on a range of topics such as psychosocial support for children, interactive learning and education in emergency.

This is to ensure children are given a fair and inclusive opportunity to continue their education.

“An entire generation of students could suffer damage to their learning and potential as a result of the pandemic and the on-going war,” said Muhammad Zaid, a Member of the Presidential Council and Acting Minister of Education.

Libya shut all schools on March 15 to control the COVID-19.

The closure left over 1,3 million learners without access to education or, for the first time, studying remotely.

UNICEF’s support will reach at least 500 000 pupils in 2020, with a focus on disadvantaged and conflict-affected minors.

“UNICEF commends the efforts of the Ministry of Education in supporting learning despite the school’s closures and therefore minimize the negative impact of the necessary lockdown,” said Abdel– RahmanGhandour, UNICEF envoy to Libya.

Denmark and the Global Partnership for Education supported the initiative.

Libya has suffered numerous conflicts over the past decade.

It has confirmed two deaths from 61 cases of COVID-19.

– CAJ News