The purpose of this study is analysing the experince of Kazakhstan in implementing distance/online learning during pandemic. The COVID-19 pandemic has affected all areas of social and economic life, including education. More than 1.3 billion students worldwide have switched to online/distance learning. In Kazakhstan, more than 6 million active participants in the educational process are navigating this online migration. There is significant criticism of the process among the general population, demanding scholarly investigations into the government’s actions.
This paper examines the re-organization of education in Kazakhstan during the COVID-19 pandemic. Methods to uncover this included an express survey of 31,300 households, in interviews with 65 parents, 15 children, 9 school/college/university administration and teachers and 15 representatives of the Government of Kazakhstan, and in analyses of statistical and regulatory documents.
This study finds that the government of Kazakhstan has faced significant issues in the transition to distance/online learning due to weak internet infrastructure and a lack of effective interaction with all stakeholders, as well as biased statistical and analytical information.
The pandemic has functioned as a test of government readiness for crisis and has exposed several fault lines where official development policy has been ineffective. While the “gap” between policy and outcome is often attributed to failures in local implementation, the unique factors at play here – an interested citizenry and committed teachers – show that considerably more work has to be put into bringing “best practices” from developed countries to developing ones.
Bokayev, B., Torebekova, Z., Abdykalikova, M. and Davletbayeva, Z. (2021), "Exposing policy gaps: the experience of Kazakhstan in implementing distance learning during the COVID-19 pandemic", Transforming Government: People, Process and Policy, Vol. 15 No. 2, pp. 275-290. https://doi.org/10.1108/TG-07-2020-0147
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