Director of Policy Department, Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports (MoEYS)
Course: PhD in Education
University: Flinders University
The outbreak of COVID-19 has led to significant challenges across all sectors – not the least being the education sector. Close to 80% of the world’s student population – 1.3 billion children and youth – is affected by educational institute closures in 138 countries. In Cambodia, both public and private schools at all levels have been affected by COVID-19. Schools have been closed since 9 March 2020 to protect students and prevent the spread of the outbreak.
The Department of Policy, in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports (MoEYS), is headed by Chankoulika Bo, an Australia Awards Scholarship alumna, who graduated with a PhD in Education from Flinders University in 2016. The Department of Policy’s mandate is to develop education policies, policy actions and educational intervention plans based on scientific research. Under Chankoulika’s stewardship, the Department has developed an equitable education response to COVID-19, that guides education interventions and decision making in the sector during the outbreak. This response framework is designed on the tenets of ensuring the continuity of learning of students, well-being and mental health of teachers, school leaders and students, teacher professional development, the support to school director to navigate the COVID-19 impact on their school and community and support for parents to help their children at home.
Chankoulika acknowledged the progress made in addressing COVID-19 impacts however there is much more to do. ‘’We are now conducting a comprehensive study of the impact of COVID-19 on education in Cambodia and how well Cambodia has responded. Using a participatory approach, drawing on the creativity and innovation of all stakeholders, the study will propose the sector’s recovery strategies, in addition to preparedness for future disasters that may impact our education system’’, Chankoulika said.
The Australian Embassy applauds Chankoulika and the many other Australia Awards alumni making a difference in their chosen field of endeavor during this difficult time.
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