German-speaking education unions raise concerns over digital deficit exposed by COVID-19

published 18 May 2020 updated 17 June 2020

Three member organisations in German-speaking countries have issued a joint statement in which they highlight their shared concerns about the impact of COVID-19 on their national education systems.

On 11 May, European affiliates Dachverband Lehrerinnen und Lehrer Schweiz(LCH), Gewerkschaft Öeffentlicher Dienst(GÖD), and Verband Bildung und Erziehung(VBE), from Switzerland, Austria, and Germany respectively, raised concerns about the handling of the COVID-19 crisis.

Insufficient training for distance learning

In a joint statement, the unions said that, in some instances, school closures were announced at very short notice. This lack of preparation had a very real impact on education personnel with insufficient training which led to inadequate preparation for the transition to distance teaching.

This concern is longstanding, as these three education unions have been campaigning together for better digital infrastructure in their national education systems for years.

Statement and Guidance

To read the joint LCH, GÖD, and VBE Statement on COVID-19 (in German), click here

Education International has also released a Guidance for reopening schools and education institutions, which is available here