PanaTimes

Saturday, Feb 04, 2023

Younger children most affected by Covid lockdowns, new research finds

Younger children most affected by Covid lockdowns, new research finds

Educational progress and social development of four- and five-year-olds suffered severely
The youngest children have been most affected by lockdowns and closures during the Covid pandemic, with new research finding that the educational progress and social development of four- and five-year-olds suffered severely during their first year at school.

Aggressive behaviour such as biting and hitting, feelings of struggling in class or being overwhelmed around large groups of children were among the difficulties reported by teachers during interviews.

Claudine Bowyer-Crane, of the National Institute for Economic and Social Research, said the findings were worrying: “Not only does it suggest that children who started reception in 2020 are struggling in the specific learning areas of literacy and maths but also that a smaller proportion of these children are achieving a good level of development.”

The research – published by the Education Endowment Foundation – found parents and teachers concerned that children in England were struggling with their emotional wellbeing as well as their ability to learn language and numeracy skills, after starting in reception classes after the earlier spring lockdown.

“For many children the experience of lockdown was made harder by cramped living conditions, no access to green spaces, parental mental health difficulties and financial hardship. On starting school, they had to contend with the disruption caused by Covid-19 restrictions only to then go back into another lockdown after just one term of schooling,” the researchers concluded.

Teachers who spoke to the researchers said the disruption had left some infants with “low self-esteem and confidence”, and that more children than previously “feel overwhelmed” by learning.

Others highlighted increased behaviour problems seen when children returned to school, with some “biting, hitting, unable to share”, leading to teachers having to focus more on helping children settle back into school.

Ruth Coleman, headteacher at Highfield school in Ipswich, said: “When children returned to our nursery after the pandemic, many struggled with vital aspects of early years development, such as personal touch, or coping in bigger groups of children.

“We saw more children who had separation anxiety from their parents too. Some children were further behind with speech and language development than we’d expect.”

The study looked at more than 3,000 children who began their reception year in September 2020, with their school year disrupted by the second lockdown in November 2020 and the third in January to March 2021. Many of those children had previously missed out attending daycare or other early years settings during the March 2020 lockdown.

Teachers reported that some parents were unable to help their children learn during the lockdowns, finding it difficult to teach reading and writing. “Some parents were very difficult to engage and maybe we should have tried harder to get those children into school as they are now significantly behind,” one teacher commented.

The study found that more children finished reception year behind in their expected goals than in pre-pandemic years, with the equivalent of three fewer children in every classroom not reaching expected levels of academic, personal and physical development.

Prof Becky Francis, the chief executive of the EEF, said: “The early years are such a crucial time for children’s development, both in terms of their attainment outcomes and their social and emotional wellbeing. So it is particularly concerning that fewer children reached the expected levels of development by the end of reception class.”
Newsletter

Related Articles

PanaTimes
Close
0:00
0:00
Charlie Munger, calls for a ban on cryptocurrencies in the US, following China's lead
EU found a way to use frozen Russian funds
First generation unopened iPhone set to fetch more than $50,000 at auction.
WARNING GRAPHIC CONTENT - US Memphis Police murdering innocent Tyre Nichols
House Speaker Kevin McCarthy said he will block Reps. Adam Schiff and Eric Swalwell from serving on the House Intelligence Committee
Almost 30% of professionals say they've tried ChatGPT at work
Interpol seeks woman who ran elaborate exam cheating scam in Singapore
What is ChatGPT?
Bill Gates is ‘very optimistic’ about the future: ‘Better to be born 20 years from now...than any time in the past’
Tesla reported record profits and record revenues for 2022
Germany confirms it will provide Ukraine with Leopard 2 tanks
Prince Andrew and Virginia Giuffre Photo Is Fake: Ghislaine Maxwell
Opinion | Israel’s Supreme Court Claims a Veto on Democracy
Moonwalker Buzz Aldrin Gets Married On His 93rd Birthday
Who’s Threatening Israeli Democracy?
Federal Reserve Probes Goldman’s Consumer Business
China's first population drop in six decades
Microsoft is finalising plans to become the latest technology giant to reduce its workforce during a global economic slowdown
Tesla slashes prices globally by as much as 20 percent
1.4 Million Copies Of Prince Harry's Memoir 'Spare' Sold On 1st Day In UK
After Failing To Pay Office Rent, Twitter May Sell User Names
Lisa Marie Presley, singer and daughter of Elvis, dies aged 54
FIFA president questioned by prosecutors
Britain's Sunak breaks silence and admits using private healthcare
Hype and backlash as Harry's memoir goes on sale. Unnamed royal source says prince 'kidnapped by cult of psychotherapy and Meghan'
Saudi Arabia set to overtake India as fastest-growing major economy this year 
Google and Facebook’s dominance in digital ads challenged by rapid ascent of Amazon and TikTok
FTX fraud investigators are digging deeper into Sam Bankman-Fried's inner circle – and reportedly have ex-engineer Nishad Singh in their sights
TikTok CEO Plans to Meet European Union Regulators
France has banned the online sale of paracetamol until February, citing ongoing supply issues
Japan reportedly to give families 1 million yen per child to move out of Tokyo
Will Canada ever become a real democracy?
Hong Kong property brokerages slash payrolls in choppy market
U.S. Moves to Seize Robinhood Shares, Silvergate Accounts Tied to FTX
Effect of EU sanctions on Moscow is ‘less than zero’ – Belgian MEP
Coinbase to Pay $100 Million in Settlement With New York Regulator
FTX assets worth $3.5bn held by Bahamas securities regulator
A Republican congressman-elect is under investigation in New York after he admitted he lied about his education and work experience.
Brazilian football legend Pele, arguably the greatest player ever, has died at the age of 82.
Hong Kong to scrap almost all its Covid rules
EU calls screening of travellers from China unjustified
US imposes Covid testing for visitors from China
Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy Addresses Joint Session of Congress - FULL SPEECH
Where is Rishi? Chancellor Jeremy Hunt's excuses about the UK's economic challenges just don't make sense
Former FTX CEO Bankman-Fried finally arrested in Bahamas after U.S. files charges
Corruption works: House Financial Services Chair Waters doesn't plan to subpoena her donor, Sam Bankman-Fried, to testify at hearing on FTX collapse
Ronaldo's new contract...
Prince William's godmother resigns honorary royal role after exposing her/their racism
Tax fraud verdict again exposes illusion of Trump the master businessman
Tax fraud verdict again exposes illusion of Trump the master businessman.
×