UNICEF’s ‘Learning Crisis Classroom’ sounds outside the UN building

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Ahead of the United Nations’ recent ‘Transforming Education Summit’, UNICEF placed a blackboard and a series of empty desks outside the visitor entrance of its headquarters to amplify the poor state of student learning during the ongoing pandemic, for visiting world leaders.

The organization says the “Learning Crisis Classroom” is designed to “draw attention to the urgent need to transform education systems worldwide” as growing achievement gaps have left millions of schoolchildren “without basic math and reading skills.”

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According to the organization’s preview announcement, “one-third of the desks in the model classroom are made of wood and are fully functioning with an iconic UNICEF backpack placed on the school chair behind it, representing one-third of 10-year-olds worldwide considered to be able to read and understand a simple written story.


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“The remaining two-thirds of desks are nearly invisible and made of clear material to indicate that an estimated 64 percent of children by the age of 10 are not yet able to read and understand a simple written story. ” The installation will remain up to and including Monday; read the full UNICEF introduction.

Getty Images

Getty Images

Getty Images

Getty Images

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