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COVID-19: Turkey keeps public education alive

COVID-19: Turkey keeps public education alive
With schools shut down due to COVID-19, 18 million students in Turkey receive lessons via online and TV channels

By Selma Kasap

ANKARA (AA) - While over 1.5 billion students worldwide have been deprived of face-to-face education due to the coronavirus lockdown, Turkey is the second country to start nationwide remote education.

According to data compiled by Anadolu Agency, the novel coronavirus hampered education in 184 countries for over 1.5 billion students -- 87% of students across the globe.

While many countries shut down schools in a bid to counter the outbreak, Turkey and China were among the few that commenced online or remote education initiatives.

Shortly after schools were shut down in Turkey, 18 million students began receiving online and TV school lessons through the country's Education Information Network (EBA) and public broadcaster TRT EBA.

In line with the decisions of Turkey's scientific board on the coronavirus outbreak, remote lessons, which were launched on March 23, will continue until April 30.

Three TRT channels were designated exclusively for primary, secondary, and high school lessons lasting 20 to 25 minutes.

As for EBA, the world's largest online education platform, students can access 1,600 lessons, as well as more than 20,000 interactive content.

Notably, the top three mobile operators in Turkey have provided students with eight gigabytes of free internet data so to access online lessons.

The EBA system has also launched "live classes" where both lecturers and students can see each other, with over 2.7 million students to join such classes if pilot tests prove effective.

In addition to the standard curriculum, the National Education Ministry has also integrated arts, sports, and scientific activities to the EBA system.

When the lockdown ends, according to Education Minister Ziya Selcuk, students will be given weekend or summer compensation lessons.

Selcuk had previously said Turkey's remote education initiative was only comparable in scale to that of China's.

After originating in Wuhan last December, COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, has spread to at least 180 countries and regions across the world, with its epicenter shifting to Europe, while China has said it has largely come out of the crisis.

The virus has killed more than 43,200 people and infected over 873,700 globally, while some 184,700 people recovered from the disease, according to figures collated by the U.S.-based Johns Hopkins University.

source: News Feed
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