The Social Observatory of the “la Caixa” Foundation has just released an article written by members of the Nova SBE Economics of Education Knowledge Center under the project “Teaching and learning at distance in Portugal during COVID-19 times”.
In Portugal, the covid-19 pandemic led to temporary school lockdowns and a generalised move to online teaching. This article uses data from a survey administered to teachers between March 2020 and January 2021 in three rounds of questionnaires. It shows that the pandemic affected public and private schools differently and led to increased inequalities in education, as many students did not have access to computers and the Internet. The situation improved over time, especially in private schools, where students are mostly from higher-income families. Overall, teachers were able to diversify their teaching and assessment methods. However, they believed that it would take a long time for students to recover the learning losses, with public school teachers being more pessimistic. Nearly half of public-school teachers surveyed believed that this recovery would take two terms or more, whereas over a third of private school teachers made this prediction. This data was collected before the second lockdown, which started in January 2021. Teachers’ estimates for recovery time have likely increased since then.
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