Impact of COVID-19 on learning: evidence from six sub-Saharan African countries

Author(s): Dang, Hai-Anh; Oseni, Gbemisola; Zezza, Alberto; Abanokova, Kseniya

Organisation(s): World Bank

Publisher(s): World Bank

Date: 2021

Pages: 7 p.


The COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked havoc upon global learning, with many countries facing severe school disruptions and closures. An emerging literature based on household survey data points to the pandemic as having exacerbated inequalities in education and learning in countries from Italy to Denmark, the United Kingdom, and the United States. This brief offers new analysis on the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on learning outcomes for six sub-Saharan African countries. The authors analyze detailed household level data from several rounds of panel phone surveys collected by the World Bank in Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Malawi, Mali, Nigeria, and Uganda. These surveys were first implemented between late April and early June 2020, after school closures due to the pandemic. In each survey round, the surveyed households were asked a set of core questions on topics such as knowledge of COVID and mitigation measures, access to educational activities during school closures, dynamics of employment, household income and livelihood, income loss and coping strategies, and received assistance.

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