2021年4月29日 星期四

Online Schools Are Here to Stay, Even After the Pandemic 當疫情過去 線上學校會留下


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2021/04/30 第330期 訂閱/退訂看歷史報份
 
 
紐時周報精選 Tropical Forest Destruction Accelerated in 2020 大疫之年 熱帶森林被砍更凶
Online Schools Are Here to Stay, Even After the Pandemic 當疫情過去 線上學校會留下
紐時周報精選
 
Tropical Forest Destruction Accelerated in 2020 大疫之年 熱帶森林被砍更凶
文/Henry Fountain
譯/陳韋廷 核稿/樂慧生

大疫之年 熱帶森林被砍更凶

Tropical forests around the world were destroyed at an increasing rate in 2020 compared with the year before, despite the global economic downturn caused by the pandemic, which reduced demand for some commodities that have spurred deforestation in the past.

2020年儘管疫情使得全球經濟轉冷,既往刺激森林砍伐的一些商品需求隨之減少,然而相較於前一年,世上熱帶森林受破壞的速度卻加快了。

Worldwide, loss of primary old-growth tropical forest, which plays a critical role in keeping carbon out of the atmosphere and in maintaining biodiversity, increased by 12% in 2020 from 2019, according to the World Resources Institute, a research group based in Washington that reports annually on the subject.

每年就此事發表報告的華府研究機構世界資源研究所指出,去年全球原始熱帶森林減少量較2019年高出12%。在防止碳進入大氣層與維持生物多樣性方面,原始熱帶林極其重要。

Overall, more than 10 million acres of primary tropical forest was lost in 2020, an area roughly the size of Switzerland. Loss of that much forest added more than 2 1/2 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere, or about twice as much as is spewed into the air by cars in the United States every year.

總體而言,2020年有1000多萬英畝原始熱帶林消失,面積與瑞士相當。消失森林如此之多,使大氣中二氧化碳增多了25億噸,約為美國每年汽車排放量的兩倍。

Brazil once again led the world in forest loss by a wide margin, as the pro-development policies of the country's president, Jair Bolsonaro, led to continued widespread clear-cutting. Surging forest losses were also reported in Cameroon in West Africa. And in Colombia, losses soared again last year after a promising drop in 2019.

巴西總統波索納洛推行開發政策,導致大面積森林持續遭到皆伐,巴西森林消失量再次遙遙領先他國。西非喀麥隆森林消失量也激增,而哥倫比亞森林消失量在2019年出現令人振奮的降幅後,去年卻再次飆升。

Indonesia and Malaysia were rare bright spots, with forest loss declining from 2019.

印尼和馬來西亞是罕見的亮點,森林消失量比2019年少。

As in previous years, most forest loss in the tropics was driven by agriculture, either the production of commodities like palm oil and cocoa or subsistence efforts by small farmers. In either case, forests are usually clear-cut and the resulting debris is burned to prepare the fields.

跟前幾年一樣,熱帶地區森林消失多由農業造成,不是為了生產棕櫚油和可可等大宗商品,就是因為小型農戶要維持生計。不管是哪種情況,森林通常都被砍伐一空,砍伐後殘留的部分則悉予焚燒,以便開墾土地。

Most of the forest loss in Brazil occurred in the Amazon rainforest, as it has for years. But this year the Pantanal, the enormous wetlands region in the southern part of the country, which also covers parts of Bolivia and Paraguay, contributed greatly to the losses. The region experienced a historic drought that led to a severe fire season, with 16 times more forest loss in 2020 than the year before.

巴西消失的森林大部分都在亞馬遜雨林,多年來一直如此,但今年位於該國南部、另也包括玻利維亞及巴拉圭部分地區的巨大濕地潘塔納爾,大大助長了森林的消失。該地區經歷了歷史性乾旱,使得林火季節災情極其嚴重,2020年損失的森林面積比前一年多出16倍。

Frances Seymour, a senior fellow at the institute, said that what happened in the Pantanal was just one example of global warming's increasing role in forest loss.

世界資源研究所的高級研究員法蘭西絲·西摩說,全球暖化在森林消失這件事上所占的分量越來越重,發生在潘塔納爾濕地的情況只是事例之一。

Seymour said that globally it was "astonishing that in a year that the global economy contracted somewhere between 3 and 4%, primary forest loss increased by 12%."

西摩表示,從全球來看,「令人震驚的是,在全球經濟萎縮了3到4%的一個年分裡,原始森林的消失量卻增加了12%」。

She said the world has yet to see the greatest impact on forests from the pandemic, "which will probably come into play as economies start to recover."

她說,世人尚未看到疫情對森林造成的最大影響,「這種影響恐怕會隨著經濟開始復甦而浮現」。

 
Online Schools Are Here to Stay, Even After the Pandemic 當疫情過去 線上學校會留下
文/Natasha Singer
譯/莊蕙嘉 核稿/樂慧生

當疫情過去 線上學校會留下

Rory Levin, a sixth grader in Bloomington, Minnesota, used to hate going to school. He has a health condition that often makes him feel apprehensive around other students. Taking special-education classes did little to ease his anxiety.

美國明尼蘇達州布魯明頓市的六年級學生羅利•李凡曾經討厭上學,他有健康問題,常讓他和其他學生共處時感到焦慮,上特教課程對於紓解他的焦慮幫助不大。

So when his district created a stand-alone digital-only program, Bloomington Online School, last year for the pandemic, Rory opted to try it. Now the 11-year-old is enjoying school for the first time, said his mother, Lisa Levin. He loves the live video classes and has made friends with other online students, she said.

因此,當他的學區去年因疫情而設置獨立的全數位學程「布魯明頓線上學校」時,羅利決定試試。他的母親莉莎•李凡說,現在這個11歲的男孩首度能夠享受上學了,她說,他喜愛直播影音課程,也和其他線上學生成了朋友。

In December, Bloomington Public Schools decided to keep running the online school even after the pandemic subsides. Lisa Levin plans to re-enroll Rory for this fall.

去年12月,布魯明頓公立學校決定,疫情趨緩後讓線上學校繼續營運。莉莎•李凡計畫今年秋季再幫羅利註冊。

"It is such a good fit for him," she said. "We're really hoping they can continue it for the rest of his school career."

「這實在非常適合他。」她說,「我們真心希望能繼續辦下去,直到他的學校教育結束都不要停。」

A year after the coronavirus set off a seismic disruption in public education, some of the remote programs that districts intended to be temporary are poised to outlast the pandemic. Even as students flock back to classrooms, a subset of families who have come to prefer online learning are pushing to keep it going — and school systems are rushing to accommodate them.

在新冠病毒開始大大顛覆公立教育的一年後,學區原本規畫為暫時性的一些遠距課程,如今似乎會比疫情更持久。儘管學生紛紛湧回教室,一小群本就偏好線上學習的家庭正推動讓它繼續,而學校系統也忙著配合。

The districts are racing to set up full-fledged online schools even as concerns mount that remote learning has taken a substantial toll on many children's academic progress and emotional health. Parents and lawmakers, alarmed by the situation, have urged schools to reopen.

雖然各界日益擔心遠距學習已使許多兒童的學業進步和情緒健康大受影響,各學區仍爭相設立完整的線上學校。對此狀況有所警覺的家長和議員,呼籲學校重新開放。

Even so, at least several hundred of the nation's 13,000 school districts have established virtual schools this academic year, with an eye to operating them for years to come, education researchers said. Unlike many makeshift pandemic school programs, these stand-alone virtual schools have their own teachers, who work only with remote students and use curricula designed for online learning.

即使如此,教育研究人員說,全美1萬3000個學區中,至少數百個本學年已建立虛擬學校,並著眼於持續營運多年。不同於許多因應疫情的臨時性學校學程,這些獨立的虛擬學校有自己的教師,只教遠距學生,且使用專為線上學習設計的課程。

Yet a surge of online schools comes with risks. It could normalize remote learning approaches that have had poor results for many students, education researchers said. It could also further divide a fragile national education system, especially when many Asian, Black and Latino families have been wary of sending their children back to school this year.

不過線上學校激增伴隨著風險,教育研究者說,它可能讓遠距學習方式常態化,而這種方式對許多學生而言效果極差。它也可能進一步分化脆弱的全國教育體系,尤其是在許多亞裔、非裔及拉美裔家庭對於今年把孩子送回學校感到遲疑的此際。

"My fear is that it will lead to further fracturing and fragmentation," said Jack Schneider, an assistant professor of education at the University of Massachusetts, Lowell.

「我擔心的是,這將導致(教育體系) 進一步的斷裂與破碎。」洛厄爾麻州大學教育系助理教授傑克•史奈德說。

 
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