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A letter from NORRAG on the occasion of COVID-19

Dear NORRAG members,

I am truly excited to join NORRAG as Executive Director. I have supported and admired the work of NORRAG for many years as a network member, and served on the Consultative Committee for three years. Having worked in education and development research, policy and practice, as well as organisational development, I am thrilled to now serve the largest global network in education that is committed to equitable, quality education and learning. 

We share with you all a deep concern about the effects of crises, such as Covid-19, and how they further exacerbate the divide between those who have access to quality and equitable education and those who have not. UNESCO reports school closures in 188 countries, displacing over 1.5 billion learners and over 63 million teachers. The OECD calculates that 61% of teachers were not offered help to adapt to online teaching. How has your country responded to Covid-19? This survey will allow you to share with other network members how the pandemic has affected your work and your country’s education system. 

We hope that you are safe and well during the Covid-19 pandemic. NORRAG will soon resume activities from our Geneva office under new health regulations. The principles and orientation of NORRAG will not change. We have been reflecting, however, on how we conduct our work as a global organization. Our recently published pledge reflects our vision of reducing our carbon footprint while increasing our global representation (through staff and advisors), and reach and inclusion through virtual technologies for meetings and events.   

During this period, we successfully held an online launch of the KIX Hub for Europe Asia Pacific (EAP) on 27 May. This event was attended by over 85 participants representing 18 of the 21 participating countries, as well as our partners ACER (Australian Council for Educational Research), FHI360, Nazarbayev University (Kazakhstan), UNESCO Bangkok, UNICEF Regional Office Geneva, GPE and IDRC. KIX EAP Hub comes at a timely moment to strengthen education systems, surfacing and sharing innovations from local and national contexts to inform regional and global policies and practices. Our Philanthropy in Education events have been delayed, but will be rescheduled. 

We have addressed the pandemic in several ways, including a curated collection of external resources on education disruption related to Covid-19, which includes guidance for education system administrators, and an expanding list of NORRAG and our network’s responses to Covid-19. We also published NSI 04: New Philanthropy and the Disruption of Global Education, and an event on the topic will take place at the end of June, with the authors and co-editors. Tell us here if you’d like to be informed when registration opens.

As always, we look to involve and support our members as much as possible, and we hope that the situation is improving where you are. Please do not hesitate to get in touch! 

Kind regards,

Moira V. Faul
Executive Director

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