Estimated average months of learning lost due to COVID-19 by ethnicity U.S. 2020
Implications of keeping schools open
School districts across the country have had to make tough decision to switch to online learning. As of February 2021, about a third of schools across the country were teaching virtually. There have been several arguments for keeping schools open, which are centered on the social, mental, and educational development of children. However, many argue that the physical health of children and their families take priority during this unprecedented time. Opponents of opening schools urge the government to find strategies that mitigate the disease and find a solution that fits the needs of all students.
Implications of keeping schools closed
If schools were to remain closed during the pandemic, there would be also other negative side effects. Because of the switch to online learning, it is estimated that if in-classroom instruction resumes by fall 2021, students will have lost about 12.4 months of learning. Furthermore, as of February 2021, nearly a third of parents thought their child was behind where they should be when it came to their reading and writing skills.