IGF 2020 WS #212 Learn from Home During COVID-19

Time
Thursday, 12th November, 2020 (14:30 UTC) - Thursday, 12th November, 2020 (16:00 UTC)
Room
Room 2
About this Session
This session focuses on practices, experiences, and insights on digital infrastructure, learning management systems, and new digital behaviors during COVID-19. It will also cover the education for the most marginalized post-COVID-19, and suggest guidance for governments in the uses of digital technologies in education. We hope to come up with a more complete overview of the challenges faced by educators and learners, and suggestions to the identified issues together with all attendees.
Thematic Track

Organizer 1: Jenna Man Hau Fung, DotAsia/ NetMission.Asia
Organizer 2: Amogh Palleri Chettuparambil, National University of Sinagpore
Organizer 3: Edmon Chung, Dot Asia Registry
Organizer 4: Paola Galvez, NIUBOX
Organizer 5: Veronica STEFAN, Digital Citizens Romania, Think-Tank

Speaker 1: Tim Unwin, Intergovernmental Organization, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)
Speaker 2: Rilla Gusela Sumisra, Technical Community, Asia-Pacific Group
Speaker 3: Paola Galvez, Private Sector, Latin American and Caribbean Group (GRULAC)
Speaker 4: Veronica STEFAN, Civil Society, Eastern European Group

Moderator

Edmon Chung, Technical Community, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)

Online Moderator

Amogh Palleri Chettuparambil, Civil Society, Asia-Pacific Group

Rapporteur

Jenna Man Hau Fung, Civil Society, Asia-Pacific Group

Format

Round Table - Circle - 90 Min

Policy Question(s)

This workshop will be moderated along with a set of policy questions and the organizers will develop and discuss with the speakers in the months leading up to the event. The moderator and organizers will work with speakers in advance to ensure the quality and the content of the discussion.

1. What technologies and platforms are used by students and educators when learning from home?

2. What are the challenges and the limitations faced by the management of the schools and the educators?

3. How do existing materials and tools accommodate people with different abilities? What are the possibilities of new tools and platforms if the current ones are not sufficient?

4. Which is the role of multi-stakeholders in the implementation of Learn from home due to COVID-19?

5. How COVID-19 pandemic is redefining the role of educators in digital education?

6. What are the limitations and challenges faced by the underprivileged group of students? How do governments, educators, or schools tackle the phenomenons?

7. How could we close the digital divide under the new shifts in education within a country or region, and between developed and Less-developed countries?

8. What should be done to improve the digital literacy of the educators at individual, organizational, and governmental levels?

9. What are the privacy and security vulnerabilities associated with zoom or similar popular video conferencing apps regarding Learn from the home process? How could we solve this problem?

10. What are the ICT development opportunities of education and learning that will be implemented in the future after getting insight from this pandemic?

A novel coronavirus first encountered in Wuhan, China in 2019, it then widely spread to many Asian countries and it has further affected more than 1,400,000 people across the globe, causing over 80,000 deaths. The escalation of COVID-19 worldwide has demanded governments’ attention to take precautions, from suspending the public services to a temporary closure of schools. The private sector in Hong Kong and Japan, for example, encourage their employees to work remotely, in order to keep their business up but prevent gathering at the office. But what about our “kids”? While we work from home, what do schools do to ensure students are accessing education amid the COVID-19 lockdowns? How technologies help us to overcome the limitation during this pandemic? What are the challenges faced by educators? Millennials and gen-z are digital natives, but what about the students who do not have stable access to the internet at home? In some cases, the home bandwidth simply isn't enough for working people and students to share and thus will be competing for resources. How about the teachers? Are they empowered with sufficient capacity to continue the curriculum with their students? How do they engage their students remotely? These are all new to us, both the virus and distance learning. Perhaps it is time for us to think of a way and work together to further develop digital education.

SDGs

GOAL 4: Quality Education
GOAL 5: Gender Equality
GOAL 9: Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure
GOAL 10: Reduced Inequalities
GOAL 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities
GOAL 16: Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions
GOAL 17: Partnerships for the Goals

The spread of COVID-19 has changed the way we live completely. While we work from home, the kids are also studying remotely when schools are suspended. How technologies help us to overcome the limitation during this period? Both the virus and remote education. Perhaps it is time for us to think of a way to further develop digital education.

Expected Outcomes

To achieve expected outcomes, organizers and speakers will work together in the months leading to the forum for setting up a mutual understanding of the workshop topic and possible questions that will build the foundation of fruitful discussion. For the record, before, during and after this session we will create publications on local and global Internet Governance Organisation news and also educational sites, both in social media platforms and official websites such as Internet Development Institute (local), APAC ICT Women, ISOC Chapters and Special Interest Groups (SIG), NetMission.Asia or Youth4IG (regional), a network of Youth IGF coordinators (global). This workshop will contribute to local initiatives to improve the education system because by knowing a variety of perspectives from speakers and people working in the world of education, technology, and society. It will provide best practices for methods and strategies adopted and implemented by schools of different regions around the world and also public policies drafted by Governments to enable rural students to access to the Internet and technology devices. Furthermore, it will also contribute to increasing the interest of academia, along with the increasing number of studies and research in the organization of remote education which aims to learn from previous mistakes and improve the efficiency of the e-learning system. By understanding from the topic "learn from home during COVID-19" from this session where the importance of the ability and struggle to maintain the continuity of teaching and learning in a time of global crisis, it will increase the willingness of educators to handle future possible global emergencies as well as encourage other stakeholders such as the technical community to develop better learning platforms and incentivize researchers to develop quality education and learning tools with ICT in the future. We believe that education is the premise of progress in every society. The workshop will also explore the current privacy and security vulnerabilities associated with zoom or similar popular video conferencing apps and ways to address these issues.

The Organizers plan to facilitate and encourage interaction and participation during the session with : Speakers The session organizers will facilitate participation by leveraging the round-table nature of the session and dedicating time for discussion during the session, also conducting and organizing a discussion of several policy questions which are in accordance with the speaker's expertise. The moderator will start this discussion by asking guiding questions in the first round discussion, the speakers will talk about the experiences and perspectives in the educational process in ‘Learn from home’ which aimed to answer the key points of initial policy questions such as Learning tools, challenges, limitation and education developments. The second round will discuss digital inclusion. For each round, the speakers will be asked to identify two or three key points they want to make to address their specific topic, the moderator, in turn, will interweave these points into a series of questions aimed at encouraging both expert commentary as well as a discussion between the speakers. Audience-to-Speakers (Q&A) The moderator will ensure the active participation of the audience, who will be able to intervene and ask questions to the speakers. Sufficient time will be given to online participants to ask questions. Audience-to-audience To encourage interaction and participation among audiences, the comments, responses, or questions do not have to be directed to the speakers only but everyone in the workshop. Questionnaire After the session, We will provide a questionnaire to participants and the audience to share their experiences or suggestions using ICT in the education sector and compile comments and suggestions we were unable to address during the workshop. Online Participation: The on-site moderator will work closely with the online moderator during the pre-IGF preparations to establish effective means of communication between them to ensure the timely insertion of a remote question/comment. The onsite and online moderator will encourage online participants to ask questions or comment before and throughout the workshop, the moderator makes a queue and manage the time available to address all questions both online and on-site.

Relevance to Internet Governance: As worldwide, educational institutions, schools, researchers are adapting to the shifts in digital learning. The COVID-19 pandemic caused storms on the Internet. The internet load has massively increased as all the offline operations moved online. During this chaotic time, it is essential for everyone to stay at home and try to continue with work, school, and life digitally. Governments and the private sector took many initiatives to support their nation and economies with digital inclusion addressing the digital divide, connectivity, and accessibility. These new learning modalities lead to any time, anywhere learning. This dynamic amelioration has triggered interest in various multi-stakeholders for proactive Connectivity, Content, and Accessibility. The governments, the private sector significantly impact supporting their civil society to stay home with digital connectivity and accessibility. This transition in the education system online also results in the digital divide. The student's from low-income families may not be able to adapt to this new e-school environment. They need support from schools, organizations, and the government for technological gadgets, laptops/PCs, and reliable internet access for home-based learning. It is also necessary for both governments and businesses to work towards introducing policies to eradicate the digital divide in such a pandemic situation. They have to come up with shared principles, guidance and regulations to improve the infrastructure, content, and accessibility to every one

Relevance to Theme: This session is relevant as it improves the main core of the theme of inclusion. The COVID-19 pandemic being designated as an international emergency is not something that can be underestimated. It affects all aspects of life, one of which is the education system in the world. Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) play an increasingly active role in the learning system. Along with the requirement of social/physical distancing, ICTs help break through barriers to communication and access to information and learning material. This session focuses on digital inclusion to ensure the ability of individuals or groups to access and use communication technologies and information, we believe that the key to digital inclusion is engagement and awareness of individuals in underrepresented regions around the world. We could see how the government gives enough support to educators, whether schools have enough virtual resources to educate and provide reliable and trustworthy tools and the sharing of the right information. The digital divide is an existing concern in all regions around the world because the COVID-19 crisis will likely bring further global inequality. We will explore how this can lead to improved outcomes in digital education and digital inclusion by discussing some best practices, case studies, and examples in minimizing the digital divide and serving the underprivileged group of users. The starting point of digital inclusion is engagement and awareness of individuals in underrepresented regions around the world. As more and more youth (students) get connected to the internet for education during this crisis, engage in internet communities and work in industries where the internet is key, UN's sustainability efforts in reducing the digital gap that exists between societies by enhancing economic development, facilitating communication, and making future skills learning opportunities inclusive to all (Goal 4: Quality Education and Goal 10: Reduce Inequalities). To produce formulations for digital inclusion especially now, the role of the multistakeholder community cannot be emphasized enough. It is crucial to get all different stakeholders who have been engaged in the process of implementing remote learning to share ongoing education and technology issues initiated by responses to COVID-19: to seek an analysis of the situation and challenges faced, and explore various methods of implementing remote learning effectively and eliminating challenges faced with this method of learning. With the contribution and the experiences of different speakers, as well as an open discussion, we will be able to aggregate different perspectives from a spectrum of stakeholder groups across all regions.

Online Participation

 

Usage of IGF Official Tool. Additional Tools proposed: As we state in discussion facilitation, we will provide a questionnaire in google docs for comments and suggestions. You may find the draft of the questionnaire at https://nma.asia/questionnaire_covid-19.

 

Agenda

Introduction (10 mins)

Moderator will begin the session by introducing the agenda, speakers, and the background of the topics of the workshop, in order to build the ground for a discussion.

Panel Discussion (30 minutes)

A total of 3-4 speakers will be invited to present their practice of distance learning and experience in implementing the education model during the pandemic. This session serves as a platform for the speakers to exchange their experiences and opinions, in order to further develop a ground for the discussion during the open-floor session in this workshop. This enables a showcase of different cases in different economies when tackling the same challenges in a similar situation regarding Learn from Home during COVID-19.

Questions & Comment (10 minutes)

This session acts as a buffer of the workshop and enables speakers to quickly respond to the sharings or presentations of other speakers. We believe it will help form the ground for the discussion in the next agenda item. Attendees can also ask a few questions if the audience believes it is a critical point in shaping the direction of the open-floor discussion.

Open-floor Discussion (30 minutes)

Moderator will continue the session by opening the floor for questions and comments to spark up the discussion. The comments, responses or questions do not have to point to the speakers only but everyone in the workshop.

Q&A and Wrap-up (10 minutes)

Moderators to summarize the discussion and wrap up the session.

1. Key Policy Questions and related issues
What is the role of multi-stakeholders in the implementation of Learn from home due to COVID-19?
How could we close the digital divide under the new shifts in education within a country or region, and between developed and Less-developed countries?
What should be done to improve the digital literacy of the educators at individual, organizational, and governmental levels?
2. Summary of Issues Discussed
  • During the pandemic, the use of various digital tools and platforms has visibly increased. The majority of the respondents indicated that they had discovered Zoom during the Lockdown.
  • Worldwide, 71% of young people between the age of 15-24 use the internet compared to 48% of the total population.
  • Digital divides also mirror prevailing economic gaps, inequalities exist between developed and underdeveloped countries.
  • A possible prolonged pandemic, and its multiple effects in the mental health well-being of individuals and communities.
  • We need a more inclusive but also standardised approach to digital competencies for all.
  • The crisis has exacerbated widespread educational inequalities due to factors relating to gender, immigration, or learning difficulties and special needs.
  • National education policies should mandate ministries and schools to provide digital literacy involved in the national education system.
  • Empower teachers, trainers and facilitators in the effective use of digital technologies.
  • Joint efforts between the Private Sector and Private Sector plays a crucial role in identifying and implementing technology-relevant approaches to resolve these challenges ensuring appropriateness and sustainability.
  • We have to train teachers in the use of digital tech not in using off suites and  software, but how to use this amazing kit and resources are available on it, to empower and enable young people and also with vocational training, older people, to learn.  So it's not just giving them digital skills but enabling them.
  • We can be much more positive and we can rethink education for the future and use of digital technologies, and make sure that in the future, when some pandemic occurs, we can move seamlessly into new resilient education systems that use digital technology to serve the interest of everybody.
3. Key Takeaways
  • Engaging multi-stakeholders through effective partnerships. Governments need to lead the process of systemic educational transformation.
  • The private sector should be valued primarily for its understanding of the technologies, its management expertise, and its focus on sustainability, rather than merely as a vehicle for providing additional funding or technological resources for education systems.
  • New public policies that can sustainably shape our world after the COVID-19 crisis.
  • Enabling access: building resilient infrastructures for education during a pandemic or disaster.
  • It is also necessary for both governments and businesses to work towards introducing policies to eradicate the digital divide in such a pandemic situation. They have to come up with shared principles, guidance and regulations to improve the infrastructure, content, and accessibility to every one.
  • This dynamic amelioration has triggered interest in various multi-stakeholders for proactive Connectivity, Content-production, and Accessibility. The governments, the private sector significantly impact supporting their civil society to stay home with digital connectivity and accessibility.
  • Governments and the private sector are undertaking many initiatives to support their nation and economies with digital inclusion addressing the digital divide, connectivity, and accessibility. Examples are,
  • Indonesian government initiatives target wider broadband coverage in Indonesia to remote islands. The Ministry of Education Indonesia gave subsidies for internet package to students for online education
  • Latin American governments incorporated different channels in order to facilitate teaching and learning. In Columbia, Ecuador, Peru and El Salvador governments have government programs on both television and public radio for students as well as through online platforms.
  • In Dominican, the government decided to increase public Wi-Fi access as a result. More than 1000 free public Wi-Fi access points have been set up to facilitate resource distribution.
6. Final Speakers
  1. Tim Unwin 

Organization: United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization

Stakeholder Group: Intergovernmental Organization 

Regional Group: Western European and Others Group (WEOG)

 

  1. Rilla Gusela Sumisra 

 

Organization: PT. Netmarks Indonesia / Internet Development Institute 

Stakeholder Group: Technical Community 

Regional Group: Asia-Pacific Group

 

  1. Veronica Stefan 

Organization: Council of Europe/ Digital Citizens Romania, Think-Tank 

Stakeholder Group: Civil Society 

Regional Group: Eastern European Group

  1. Paola Galvez

Organization: Niubox

Stakeholder Group: Private sector

Regional Group: Latin American and Caribbean Group

 

7. Reflection to Gender Issues

During the COVID-19 outbreak Issues concerned with the safety, security and privacy associated with digital technologies have surfaced throughout. There should be policy enforcement and guidance to help protect girls and women from all forms of abuse, bullying and harassment through digital technologies. Governments should ensure that girls have as equal access to digital technologies throughout the education system

8. Session Outputs

The session contributed to increasing the interest of academia, along with the increasing number of studies and research in the organization of remote education which aims to learn from set-backsprevious mistakes and improve the efficiency of the e-learning system. In addition the speakers also published related materials as research publications local and global Internet Governance Organisation news and also educational sites, both in social media platforms and official websites. Some publications of speakers are listed below

Furthermore, There will be post on the social media platforms and official websites such as Internet Development Institute (local), APAC ICT Women, ISOC Chapters and Special Interest Groups (SIG), NetMission.Asia or Youth4IG (regional), a network of Youth IGF coordinators (global).This will increase the willingness of educators to handle future possible global emergencies as well as encourage other stakeholders such as the technical community to develop better learning platforms and incentivize researchers to develop quality education and learning tools with ICT in the future. We believe that education is the premise of progress in every society.

 

9. Group Photo
IGF 2020 WS #212 Learn from Home During COVID-19
10. Voluntary Commitment

Edmon Chung: "Talk to anyone who would listen especially schools, not forget about the zoom and the technology that you've learned and at least try to to come up with some kind of hybrid going on solution"

 

Paola Galvez: “I am committed to keep working hard to shape a better regulatory framework for a digital ecosystem and to put human being at the center".

 

Rilla Gusela Sumisra : "I hope that we can live better, keep health"

 

Tim Unwin: "Listen more speak less and post less on social media"

Veronica Stefan : "Engage young people in all these debates and whatever is following they are the biggest users the most affected they need the most important role at the table of the discussion"