Aligning for Learning: Learning Trajectories, Losses, and Coming Back Stronger than Before

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Speaker: Ms Michelle Kaffenberger

Moderators: Dr Tayyaba Tamim, Dr Rabea Malik

In the LUMS Live Session 121, Ms. Michelle discussed the potential learning losses post disasters such as Covid, floods, and rains. She shed light on how systems can be aligned to improve and build resilience. She further explained how learning trajectories are an analytic and diagnostic tool for education system analysis. They show the dynamics of children’s learning as they progress through school. The findings of the research were that the learning trajectories vary widely and are often flat. The research was conducted across 10 countries, to assess simulated literacy among young women from achieving gender equality for schooling, literacy, or both. The findings depicted that “Equality’’ across genders will often leave many children without basic skills. More years of schooling will not resolve the learning crisis as typical learning trajectories are just too flat. She further elaborated the long term implications of school closures that children experienced. She emphasized that it is not just the immediate learning loss we should be worried about, but continued, accumulating learning loss after children return to school. To move forward, towards mitigating learning losses, the solutions that RISE presents is a set of core principles called ALIGNS principles. These include setting clear learning goals, prioritizing catching up on foundational skills, adapting instruction to children’s learning levels, including assessing learning when they return to school. Besides that, lending support to teachers and other instructors and adopting particular approaches to the opportunities and constraints of the context is integral. She concluded that political and education leaders should; clearly prioritize ensuring all children achieve foundation literacy and numeracy. Thus, clear leadership would enable systems to also align around learning goals: curriculum, training, assessments, and resultantly achieve desired objectives.

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