Abdulrahman Al-Amri is the chair of the G20 Education Working Group.
He is also an assistant professor in the department of linguistics and translation studies at King Saud University. Most of his research focuses on speech perception and word recognition in Semitic languages, especially Arabic.
He also works on child language research and developmental language disorders.
Al-Amri holds a bachelor’s degree in English and a master’s degree in applied linguistics from King Saud University.
He also holds a master’s degree in linguistics, which he received in 2011, and a Ph.D. in psycholinguistics, completed in 2017, both from the University of Ottawa.
Al-Amri has more than 10 years’ experience in teaching.
He worked as an English language instructor for the Royal Saudi Air Force between December 2006 and August 2008.
He then worked as a lecturer at King Saud University between September 2008 and 2017, and also served as assistant professor of psycholinguistics in the department of linguistics at the university from September 2017 until now.
In Thursday’s T20 Virtual Conference, Al-Amri used the panel discussion to talk about how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected the education sector.
“Like many other sectors, education was highly affected by the outbreak. 1.6 billion students (91 percent of all students globally) were impacted by school closure. 195 countries either reduced local or nationwide closure of schools,” he said.
He added: “There has not been an instance in modern history where the education ecosystems have experienced such a shock. Many issues were associated with the shift to alternative solutions, including limited internet connectivity and distance learning capabilities, especially in less-developed countries.”
Referring to responses by countries, he said there needed to be a united global effort.
“Both governments and international organizations should mobilize unique and innovative solutions to mitigate the impact of COVID-19,” he added.
He said that many countries and international organizations, including UNESCO, the World Bank, and UNICEF have contributed solutions.
Al-Amri added that responses by G20 countries to mitigate the impact of the pandemic have been varied.
“There is a variety of changes; activating distance learning solutions, implementing countrywide closures of schools, and providing students, parents, and educators with the social support they need to cope with distance learning measures.”