Education: Student and teachers are back in the classroom, but the pandemic's effects remain | March 18, 2022 | Palo Alto Weekly | Palo Alto Online |

Palo Alto Weekly

Cover Story - March 18, 2022

Education: Student and teachers are back in the classroom, but the pandemic's effects remain

District leaders work to aid struggling students while also looking to a more hopeful future

by Zoe Morgan

Two years after schools abruptly shuttered to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, kids are back in class, case rates are down and masks aren't required — but the impact of the pandemic remains.

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Email Staff Writer Zoe Morgan at [email protected]

Comments

Posted by Bystander
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Mar 16, 2022 at 1:22 pm

Bystander is a registered user.

It isn't just academics that should worry educators, but the social aspects of what school provides for children. I was reading that many educators are concerned about the lack of socialization in young children, but also in teens. Children of all ages learn social schools from peers and cohorts. They learn to take turns, to share, to be challenged, to understand humor, compassion, sympathy, anger management, and a host of other social skills from being in a group of peers and cohorts.

Even among home school children, it is well known that the children do need to mix on a regular basis. They often do this through music/drama/arts, or sports, but also through other regularly scheduled activities. All these cancelations of interaction have provided a great deal of isolation, particularly for singleton kids, who have had a lot less of peer level socialization.

And this doesn't even take into account the fact that children have speech delays and various other speech problems from not being able to see lips moving as a big result of masking policies. Being able to recognize a happy face and an angry face, a face that is confused by instructions, a face that is lying or being deceitful, or even identify who is who by the pokemon mask or the Disney mask. As masks are being removed, kids are scared of what is underneath on the face of others, and afraid of what they are showing to others also.

We will call this generation the Covid generation. It is not just a little kid thing, but across the age group of all school kids. I suspect we have only scratched the surface of understanding what lasting effect this will have on the under 16 generation.


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