Primary School English Teaching During COVID-19: Preliminary Results of Three Single Case Studies in Rural Schools in Costa Rica


COVID-19 emerged as a pandemic that paralyzed the educational world in 2020. The Costa Rican Ministry of Public Education (MEP) took up two modalities, distance education (2020) and combined education (2021), with in-person education finally restored in 2022. This multiple case study consists of three single case studies in three different educational directorates in Costa Rica’s Huetar Norte Region: San Carlos, Norte-Norte, and Sarapiquí. The three studies collected and triangulated data from 15 primary-school English teachers using semi-structured virtual interviews, document gathering, video recordings, photo-elicitation, and body mapping. Content analysis was performed using WebQDA and ATLAS.ti to categorize the data. This multiple case study aims to describe the perceptions of primary English teachers regarding distance, combined, and in-person education to increase understanding of the educational context during the health crisis. The first study is completed, the second study is in the final stages of data interpretation, while the data are currently being analyzed for the third study. Some preliminary results include identification of the tensions experienced by teachers as well as the emergence of self-efficacy skills required to comply with the modalities, the lack of coordination and communication between the Ministry of Public Education and the school districts, and the distinctive characteristics and challenges of each modality. This multiple case study seeks to expand on existing literature and to better apprehend the phenomenon of the pandemic and its educational implications in rural communities in Costa Rica.

Author Information
Patricia López-Estrada, Instituto Tecnológico de Costa Rica, Costa Rica
Jonathan Elizondo-Mejías, Universidad Estatal a Distancia de Costa Rica, Costa Rica

Paper Information
Conference: ACE2023
Stream: International Education

This paper is part of the ACE2023 Conference Proceedings (View)
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To cite this article:
López-Estrada P., & Elizondo-Mejías J. (2024) Primary School English Teaching During COVID-19: Preliminary Results of Three Single Case Studies in Rural Schools in Costa Rica ISSN: 2186-5892 The Asian Conference on Education 2023: Official Conference Proceedings
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Posted by James Alexander Gordon