School ICT resources, teachers, and online education: Evidence from school closures in Japan during the COVID-19 pandemic

Author: Hideo Akabayashi, Shimpei Taguchi, Mirka Zvedelikova
Date: 2024/4/11 (first edition:2023/3/15)
No: DP2024-010
JEL Classification codes: I20, J22, H75
Language: English
[ Abstract / Highlights ]
During the COVID-19 pandemic, schools switched to online education. Using Japan’s nationwide administrative data, we examine the impact of schools’ ICT equipment and teachers’ IT skills on the provision of online classes, communication with students’ families, and teachers’ working hours in early 2020. To isolate supply-side effects, we exploit differences in ICT resources between public elementary and junior high schools at a municipality level, the level at which ICT resources are decided. We find that basic ICT equipment was critical to implementing online classes, but IT skills were not. However, IT skills were associated with teachers’ working hours.