Experts report on impact of coronavirus crisis on lifelong guidance in Europe
Cedefop invited experts from its CareersNet network to provide an initial assessment of how the coronavirus health emergency has affected the delivery of career and lifelong guidance in their country or region. Responses suggest a seismic shift towards online learning and guidance delivery.
The situation on guidance support in many countries was described as unstable in terms of system functioning and delivery. Some experts found it difficult to make a reliable assessment of the situation in a context of exceptional uncertainty.
In what many guidance experts describe as the great leap to online learning and guidance delivery, digital technologies and the role of ICT in lifelong guidance are a common focus. Themes include:
- present and future modes of delivery;
- barriers in accessing online support and multi-channelled delivery for all;
- teaching and careers learning/guidance education in school-based programmes;
- labour market information (LMI);
- need for widespread and universal upskilling and training (for practitioners, learners, beneficiaries, caregivers, jobseekers and employees, etc.);
- outreach strategies, especially in the case of vulnerable groups;
- information and guidelines related to use of digital technology;
- IT security, personal data protection and ethical themes.
The pandemic has also highlighted a need for digital competences and a broader digital skillset, not only for young learners, teachers and guidance practitioners, but for all individuals.
Support services will also be critical in providing information and guidance on upskilling and reskilling pathways for adult learners and early leavers from education and training who urgently need access to these opportunities, and who may also need moral support in the face of the coronavirus crisis.