CHICAGO – Millions of parents across the nation are facing difficult decisions about what to do with their kids this school year. But the pandemic affects every family differently, for reasons that range from their socioeconomic status to their health to the fields they work in.
Some parents are in a better position than others to ensure their children stay healthy and keep up with schoolwork, and researchers are raising questions about how the pandemic may exacerbate existing educational inequalities.
“Kids who are disproportionately low-income are at highest risk for learning losses,” said Ariel Kalil, a professor at the University of Chicago Harris School of Public Policy. “When these gaps in learning open up, absent some really serious and sustained intervention, the kids won’t (catch up). That will result in less academic achievement, lower lifetime earnings and even lower productivity in adulthood.”
USA TODAY spoke with more than a dozen