The new pandemic edtech power network emerging through UNESCO’s Global Education Coalition is seeking to fulfil the important requirement for continuity of education for hundreds of millions of students worldwide. Many of its aims and its partners are clearly involved out of strong moral commitment. Not all the partners may always share the same objectives, but have, under extraordinary conditions, translated their aims into a shared policy and technology agenda that may lead to long-term consequences. The multilateral and tech sector partners of the coalition are already pushing for long-term changes to education systems that will:
- Emphasize digital technologies as a solution to a perceived ‘crisis’ of education that pre-dates coronavirus
- Embed digital technologies as long-term infrastructures of teaching, learning and assessment
- Empower private sector technology companies as key providers of educational infrastructure, platforms, apps, content and other services
- Further decentralize education systems into connected networks where learning can be conducted across homes, schools and other settings
- Enhance data collection and expand use of data analytics, personalized learning software and AI in education
- Focus on human capital development for the digital economy, and on lubricating learning-to-earning pipelines
I have been fascinated that the call for society to stop gives some aspects of industry the green light. I am intrigued about the 90-free days and what habits may have changed formed after the miasma clears.