The World Health Organization (WHO) declared the novel coronavirus a "pandemic" during a news conference in Geneva on Mar 11. The virus has so far spread to 127 countries infecting more than 135,000 people and causing nearly 4,990 deaths, globally.
As the spread continues, administrations are putting affected areas into lockdowns and closing down schools, colleges and businesses. In fact, Google requested nearly 100,000 staffs across 11 offices in the United States and Canada to work from home. The widespread panic is driving people to hoard food, water and essential products.
This week, schools in Ohio, Maryland, Michigan and districts of Seattle and San Francisco have shut down all K-12 school to help prevent the spread of coronavirus. Schools have been closed in Japan, South Korea, Europe, Canada and in some states of India as well.
Though the closure of schools will prevent the infection from spreading, the fact that schools are likely to remain shut for an indefinite period is raising worries about the education of millions of children. This is where online education can be a game changer.
Online Education to Get a Boost
Education Week magazine, as of Mar 12, nearly 10,600 schools have been either closed or are scheduled to close, impacting nearly 4.9 million students throughout the United States. Additionally, UNESCO’s report predicts that the coronavirus pandemic will impact the education of over 290 million students across 13 countries.
This pandemic has led many to stay at home, which spells a solid opportunity for growth in online education. Students can keep learning with various video lectures, online seminars, animations, reading materials and also opt for online tests.
Additionally, on Mar 9, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) issued a new guideline, which removed restriction on the number of online courses international students can take.
5 Stocks to Watch Out
Given the current scenario, it is prudent to keep a close watch on these five online education providers that are poised to grow.
Arco Platform Limited ARCE is a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) company that provides a pedagogical system with technology-enabled features to deliver educational content to private schools,students, teachers, administrators, and parents. The company’s expected earnings growth rate for the next year is more than 100%. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here . Instructure, Inc. INST provides applications for learning, assessment, and performance management through a software-as-a-service business model. This Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) company’s expected earnings growth rate for the next quarter is 12.5%. Perdoceo Education Corporation PRDO provides education to students in various career-oriented disciplines through online, campus based, and blended learning programs. The company’s expected earnings growth rate for the current year is 5.8%. The company carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).
Next, we have
Chegg, Inc. CHGG, which operates a direct-to-student learning platform. It also allows students to find human help on its learning platform through a network of live tutors. This Zacks Rank #3 company’s expected earnings growth rate for the current quarter is 26.7%. New Oriental Education & Technology Group Inc. EDU offers online education programs that include college, K-12, and pre-school education. The company’s expected earnings growth rate for the current quarter is 13%. New Oriental Education & Technology Group carries a Zacks Rank #3. Zacks Top 10 Stocks for 2020
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