Students Struggling After Covid-19 Pandemic
A number of reports have indicated that in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, students are struggling more than they have in decades.
A report by Sarah Mervosh of The New York Times states that national test scores in math and reading dropped to the lowest marks in two decades, with nine-year-olds in particular dropping by the largest margin in 30 years. And the students dropping the most points are the students in the bottom 10th percentile of test scores from before the pandemic.
A Spectrum News report by the Associated Press, says that states across the country are seeing a rise in the number of students being held back to repeat an academic year. That report stated that in Pennsylvania, the number of retained students almost doubled, jumping by about 20,000 students being held back.
Both reports mention remote learning as a major factor of the drop in academic achievement. Mervosh's report stated that Black students lost 13 points in math compared to five points among white students because predominantly Black and Hispanic schools were more likely to use remote learning during the pandemic than predominantly white schools. And the Spectrum News report states that some parents are even choosing to have their children repeat grades because they struggled with remote learning.
Another report from Rhitu Chatterjee of NPR said that some teachers are adding mental health check-ins as part of their daily routines because of increased stress and anxiety levels of students returning to school full time. In fact, that report indicated that 76% of the public schools in the United States reported increased concerns about the mental health of their students.
The Covid-19 pandemic was a rough time for just about everyone in the United States. But with hindsight we can see that young students are struggling with the long term effects of the pandemic even more than adults who had their working lives disrupted.