09 October 2020

Early Learning From Home

The COVID-19 pandemic has upended lives across the world and impacted the wellbeing of children and families. Particularly worrying is the unprecedented disruption of learning for all children, including preschool children, due to school and Early Childhood Care and Development (ECCD) centre closures. In Bhutan, ECCD centres have been closed since March and this has impacted about 9,400 children between 3-5 years from 495 ECCD centres, which includes 51 private centres. During this period, even as centres remain closed, ECCD facilitators have risen to the challenge and supported children through remote learning platforms. Whenever and wherever feasible, home visits were carried out to monitor children’s progress as well as to provide hands-on support to caregivers/parents. A key partner in this endeavor has been the District Education Officials who have been working closely with the ECCD and SEN Division, Ministry of Education (MoE). To support the learning and engagement of children, MoE and UNICEF Bhutan have printed and distributed over 10,000 Parenting Education packages across all 20 districts. A key focus has been the direct communication with ECCD facilitators who have shared their stories with UNICEF Bhutan. Early Learning From Home, the life of an ECCD facilitator during COVID-19 pandemic, is a compilation of stories that facilitators shared to UNICEF Bhutan as part of an online campaign to highlight and acknowledge the hard work ECCD facilitators continue to do to give every child the best start in life.