How the Closure of In-School Learning Damaged U.S. Children’s Mental Health During the Pandemic

[Source: Time Magazine]

Nobody ever believed the pandemic would go easy on children. The virus might target them less directly than it targets older people, but other challenges—the loss of school, the loss of play, the loss of time with friends—would exact their own emotional toll. A study published April 29 in JAMA Network Open sheds light on how serious that harm has been.

The work, led by psychologist Tali Raviv at Northwestern University, involved a survey of more than 32,000 caregivers looking after children from kindergarten to grade 12 in the Chicago public school system. The definition of “caregiver” was broad, including parents and grandparents as well as anyone 18 or older with principal responsibility of caring for children in a household. The sample group of the families was ethnically and racially diverse—39.3% white, 30.2% Latinx; 22.4% Black; and 8.1% mixed.

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