Study Shows Kids Paid Enormous Psychological Price During Pandemic Shutdown

Written by Wes Walker on April 4, 2022

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A study has thrown new light on just how steep of price children have paid in being thrown under the (school) bus because the adults were making fear-based decisions.

The numbers that follow are even more nauseating when you recall that it was teacher union lobbying and not research data that was driving the school closure policy that put all manner of restrictions on children who were permitted to return to school.

Here’s a quick summary of the study’s scope before we jump into the results.

The findings draw on a survey of a nationally representative sample of 7,700 teens conducted in the first six months of 2021, when they were in the midst of their first full pandemic school year. They were questioned on a range of topics, including their mental health, alcohol and drug use, and whether they had encountered violence at home or at school. They were also asked about whether they had encountered racism.

Although young people were spared the brunt of the virus — falling ill and dying at much lower rates than older people — they might still pay a steep price for the pandemic, having come of age while weathering isolation, uncertainty, economic turmoil and, for many, grief. —NCDSINC

The results were exactly what those of us who had been pushing for the resumption of normal school days had been concerned about.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is warning of an accelerating mental health crisis among adolescents, with more than 4 in 10 teens reporting that they feel “persistently sad or hopeless,” and 1 in 5 saying they have contemplated suicide, according to the results of a survey published Thursday.

…The CDC survey paints a portrait of a generation reeling from the pandemic, grappling with food insecurity, academic struggles, poor health and abuse at home. Nearly 30 percent of the teens surveyed said a parent or other adult in their home lost work during the pandemic, and a quarter struggled with hunger. Two-thirds said they had difficulty with schoolwork.

…Girls, too, reported faring worse than boys. They were twice as likely to report poor mental health. More than 1 in 4 girls reported that they had seriously contemplated attempting suicide during the pandemic, twice the rate of boys. They also reported higher rates of drinking and tobacco use than boys. —WaPo

It was a shameful reversal of responsibility of care: frightened adults had purchased an appearance of ‘safety’ at the high price of children’s well-being.

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