Friday 24 March 2023

How lockdowns disrupted children’s relationship with school

Anonymous -

“One in five pupils in England were reported as persistently absent during the last school year … The proportion of children off due to illness was almost twice the rate seen [a few years ago].

“But Rachel de Souza, the children’s commissioner for England, recently also told the education committee that schools are experiencing ‘a huge amount’ of absence on Fridays in particular – a pattern that did not exist [before].

“Persistent absence – defined as missing more than 10% of classes – has always been an issue … But in the 15 years that Steven, 41, has been a secondary school teacher, he’s never seen it this bad.

“‘We’re currently dealing with student absence on a whole new level,’ the teacher from Cambridgeshire says … [He] says around a third [of his students] are now ‘almost always’ absent from lessons …

“The teacher also reports a rise in parents asking staff to provide resources for their child to learn from home, often citing anxiety and exam stress – something extremely rare before …

“‘Mary’ says her daughter, who is autistic, has ‘struggled with severe anxiety for the last few years, culminating in ongoing difficulties in attending school’ …”


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